Is Anyone Subordinate?
“Choose your words carefully” was one of the foundational maxims I heard in my high school years. “Words matter” was another one. I am thinking of those maxims as I reflect on the readings for this weekend. We may or may not hear the following words this weekend: “Wives should be subordinate to their husbands as to the Lord.” I know that there are also words about mutual subordination and mutual love and dignity expressed in the rest of the reading. But as I see the images of women and girls in Afghanistan, as I listen to the local news and the continuous “domestic abuse” and killing of women and girls in our own city, I, like many other women, am so aware of how those words “subordinate to their husbands” or subordinate to men are used. I would like to think that we have changed—that we have made other choices! How can we restore God’s intent to honor the dignity of every person God has created? How do we love and honor every human being? Is this one of the “hard sayings” that lead us to leave the path—The Way of being followers of Jesus? We too have choices in the words we use to describe our relationships to other humans (not just women and girls). Listen this week to words that express the subordination of any person or groups of persons. Then let us see if we can act as Jesus did to include everyone, without exception, in mutual love.
If you are curious about how others reflect on these readings, check these out: