The other day I happened to go through some old writings from college and I stumbled upon something. It was a reflection I wrote in a Theology class where we had discussed the “texts of terror.” “Texts of Terror” is a term created by Phyllis Trible to refer to four narratives of disturbing violence against women that are depicted in the Old Testament. The class was, understandably, triggering for me. I had never heard these stories before. After the class I wrote a reflection to process.
Four months after hearing the term “egalitarian” for the first time, I found myself preaching on gender-equality.
I was visiting the Democratic Republic of the Congo because my youngest sister, Joella, was adopted from there. I had come to work in her orphanage and I had been asked to preach instead. So there I was, only a few days in the country, preaching for the very first time. If I hadn’t already been sweating from the sun that poured in through the overhead covering made of palm fronts, the women that were dancing and singing in front of me would have made me break out into a full body sweat. My translator said that these women had come from all different villages to celebrate church together. He said that there were 1,000 people, mostly women, gathered today to hear the woman from America talk. I was only 21 at the time–no pressure.