Thoughts on rights for women
Women are struggling for freedom around the world. In many countries sex trafficking continues unabated. In Afghanistan and elsewhere, women have been denied the right to education. Even in the United States and other developed countries, there are women who suffer abuse, who have not yet moved above the “glass ceiling” in employment, or who experience sexual harassment in the workplace.
Here are some thoughts I’ve found helpful as I’ve prayed about these issues.
Gratitude. As we magnify the good in prayer, we see more good expressed. My prayer of gratitude might go like this: “Father-Mother God, thank you for creating everyone equal. Thank you for giving women strength, intelligence, and courage, as well as giving men tenderness, insight, and caring. Thank you for protecting them, for cherishing, encouraging, and guiding them.”
When my heart is full of gratitude for God’s goodness, I go on to address the obstacles that would stand in the way of seeing spiritual truth expressed in our experience.
All have value. Given that God is the only creator, no one can be burdened with the belief that he or she has been born in the wrong place, of the wrong gender, or at the wrong time. Each individual—female or male—has been created by a loving God. Each has a purpose and talents designed to bless. By affirming that women are known and protected by their Creator, we lift off the sense that they are victims, and affirm that they are never forgotten, ignored, or marginalized.
Never separated from God. No one can get out of God’s presence, no matter what! As a hymn puts it, “None can beyond Thy omnipresence stray” (Violet Hay, Christian Science Hymnal, No. 66). The concept of Christ, or Immanuel, as Mary Baker Eddy defines it, is “ ‘God with us,’—a divine influence ever present in human consciousness …” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. xi).
The Psalmist assures us, “Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? … if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there” (Psalm 139:7, 8). What a comfort it is to know that even in the worst conditions, the healing influence of Christ is present. Our prayers can insist that the Christ’s offer of hope, peace, safety, salvation is heard and felt!
God’s ideas are not weak. Historically women have been called and even treated
as the “weaker sex.” What a lie about God’s workmanship! God is omnipotent. That must mean that the divine power fills all space. Nothing and no one can be left out of expressing and experiencing this all-power.
Freedom from exploitation. Could exploitation be part of the divine plan for God, who is All-Love? Absolutely not. God never made anyone to be a victim or to be capable of perpetuating evil in any guise.
Freedom is a right for everyone. Christ opens prison doors, releases from bondage, punctures glass ceilings, and rights wrongs.
The ultimate power. As our hearts reach out in love for our sisters (and brothers), as we actually feel this love, we are opening the floodgates of consciousness for divine Love to operate.
Eddy refers to divine Love as the “universal solvent” (Science and Health, p. 242). Ever-present Love dissolves whatever would resist Christ. Love liberates, lifts, enriches, fulfills, inspires, ministers, supports. It can be felt everywhere, by everyone, at every moment.