For the past week, I’ve been referring to God as “She” or “Her” when the need to use a pronoun arises. I mentioned this experiment on the blog last week and it brought with it a string of conversation I found very interesting. It’s also shaped some of my thoughts through out the week. You really should go read the comment section on the post, there are a lot of great thoughts. I felt a clarification or two might be in order.
This Is An Experiment
I think experimenting is important (don’t take that the wrong way). Christians especially are notorious for our sort of black and white stances on so many things. Sometimes I think it’s justified, but many times I think it’s not. When I decided to spend the month referring to God as “She” I did not make a fundemental switch in my doctrine or theology. I’m not making a definitive statement of the gender of God or even of my social or political leanings. If I decide to go back to referring to God as “He” come January, I don’t think any irreversable damage will be done. I think we need to be open to trying new things, hearing other opinions, walking a mile in another persons shoes. This is just an attempt to do that in a small way.
Men and Women have experienced life Differently
Regardless of what you think about gender, gender roles, sexual orientation, societies stereotypes, and more, there is the undeniable reality that we have been shaped by our experience; and men and women’s life experience is fundamentally different. I’m not attempting to make any statement about biology or innate traits of men and women, I’m simply acknowledging that the way we are treated as “boys” and “girls” affect the types of adults that we become. One way I believe we’ve been shaped differently is in our understanding and connection with “God”. The reality that we have almost all grown up with God being a “He” has an impact on us, particularly differently if we ourselves are “he” or “she”. That being the case, this experiment is also an opportunity to see this small aspect of my life differently then I have for the past 26 years.
I’ll try and share more of my thoughts thus far on the actual practice of calling God “She” later this week if I can. For now, I hope these two points open your mind a bit to what this is about.