I am convinced that the American church is not familiar enough with the many talented, called, powerful women found within the pages of our most sacred text. Inside the Bible, we encounter women who are political leaders, warriors, builders, prophets, church leaders, business owners in addition to wives, mothers, and disciples. Little may be known about them because their stories are often not heard from the pulpit or taught in Bible studies, even Bible studies geared towards women. As a result, Christian women and men unknowingly suffer from a lack of knowledge.
If we don’t know the stories of these incredible women, we miss out on understanding who we are as Women Disciples. If we don’t read and talk about these complex women, the church runs the risk of overlooking a deep and rich spiritual heritage that belongs to both women and men. These Biblical women are role models for us and give us a visual of what is possible in the kingdom of God. If Biblical women remain unseen, it shouldn’t be surprising that future Women Disciples could also be unseen, devalued, and underutilized. The first step in combatting this is simple: let’s read about these women together.
For the next couple of weeks, we’re going to read about women in the Bible and dig into their stories to learn how to better follow God. Some of these women may be familiar, and some may be little known. My hope is that it will spur us on to read and study our spiritual foremothers, learn from their successes and mistakes, and ultimately be excited for the possibilities God has for us.
From the beginning, we Women Disciples have been image-bearers of God and commissioned with the same charge as Men Disciples to fill and rule the earth (Genesis 1:26-28). This is reaffirmed when the Holy Spirit came equally on both women and men believers in the upper room in the city of Jerusalem (Acts 2:17-18). These mighty moments in time demonstrate God’s love and value for God’s daughters. These are reasons alone to learn about and value the women of the Bible. Grab your pens and highlights and journals; keep your Bible close at hand and your YouVersion app open—the next couple of weeks are sure to be an adventure!
Movement Step: List every woman in the Bible you can think of (without opening your Bible or doing a Google search). How many came to mind? Choose one of the women and look up her story. Consider the following questions as you read her story:
- What’s her name and occupation?
- Where did she live, and what was happening in her community?
- How did she follow (or not follow) God? Why was her faith (or lack of faith) important to her?
- What are her strengths? Weaknesses?
- How did God use her in God’s kingdom?
- What lessons do you learn from her?