"I often think of Lydia when people argue over the false dichotomy of whether or not women should work. Women have always worked; they will always work - for their families, for their homes, for survival, for provision, for the good of their souls. It's a straw man argument for the purposes of arguing or imposing a new law. Lydia used her portion, a considerable business acumen and subsequent wealth, for the benefit of the gospel."This is not what I saw myself reading this year, but life is full of surprises. A couple of my coworkers have read both of Sarah Bessey's books and highly recommended them to me, but it wasn't until I heard her speak at my church that I finally picked up Jesus Feminist. I had seen it on the shelf; noticed it when it first came into the store last year; and the title made me want to read it, but non-fiction can be so hard for me. It took me weeks to finish Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, even though I adored the book. This is a bit of the same story, but I'm getting through it, and it is beautiful.
Chapter Six: Patron Saints, Spiritual Midwives, and "Biblical Womanhood"
Jesus Feminist, Sarah Bessey
It is powerful, and wonderful, and encouraging. Her words are beautiful, and her thoughts are careful and blessedly heart-warming. And strong. Her words are so, so strong.
I recommend this book to any woman. And I recommend this book to anyone who has felt oppressed, as a woman, in the church. Even if it felt minor. Even if it was something that you were fine brushing off, because it didn't really apply to you anyways.
This is a book to encourage women, but Sarah Bessey doesn't ignore men either. She approaches everything with a care, gentleness and grace that calms the nerves and the anger and the judgement on either end of the spectrum. She brings the reader in for a chat. A deep, and perhaps difficult chat, but approached in such a way that the frayed nerves don't feel so raw and the hurt doesn't rear its head so violently. Because there is a lot of hurt on the subject, and a lot of violence and frustration and anger. Sarah Bessey is here to set that aside. She "makes her case - not as a fire-breathing debater - but as a woman utterly captivated by Jesus, who will stop at nothing to follow him" (Carolyn Custis James, author of Half the Church).
Now, I'm not good with non-fiction, as I've said. I'm also awful with confrontation and seriously angsty and argumentative topics. But I love this book. I love the kindness and gentleness of it. I love the truth and the warmth of heart and the strength.
For more information on Jesus Feminist by Sarah Bessey, visit our website here.