When I was applying to college, admission counselors kept asking me what I wanted to be when I grew up. “A wife,” I’d say. “And a mom.”
“No,” they’d inevitably respond. “I mean, what do you want to BE?”
My parents raised my sisters and me with the understanding that being a godly wife and mom are the most rewarding vocations a woman can have, that careers and diplomas and letters behind your name are commendable and noteworthy but that they will never bring you the same joy and contentment that a family can.
So it always sets me back on my heels a bit when I hear people in the church saying that I shouldn’t work at The Lutheran Witness, that a pastor should be in my position, or that if no pastors are available, it should at least be a man.
The underlying premise behind the remarks is that I presumably don’t want to be a wife and that I don’t want to be a mom, that I’m shunning those good things, that I’m putting them aside to break through some sort of non-existent glass ceiling, that I’m a closet feminist.
So let me set the record straight: (1) You won’t find a bigger proponent of wives and mothers than me. (2) You’ll also never hear me say that there’s no place for women in the church who aren’t married or don’t have children. There is. There most certainly is. And it is necessary, and it is good.
All women have crosses. And those crosses are unique to them. And so, in the meantime, while we pray for them to be removed, we move forward in forgiveness, in hope, in joy that we are loved wholly and completely and without assumptions in Jesus Christ.