Rory and Denise Wilson, with their son Gideon, are CMS Ireland Mission Partners working in Kiwoko Hospital, Uganda where Rory is the hospital's Medical Superintendent. Denise is involved in teaching the students of the nurse training school.
Celebrating Women's Day in Uganda
Posted by Rory Wilson on Fri, 17 Mar 2017 | 0 comments | Bookmark:
On the 8th March a group of 48 ladies, (staff from the hospital), met together to celebrate Women’s Day – an official public holiday here in Uganda. Aside from the games, top tips on hair, make-up and fashion, we also had some quality teaching on Biblical Womanhood from Jennie Dangers. It was a thought provoking and affirming day in terms of being a woman.
How would you define what a ‘woman’ is? How do you think the church in your country defines womanhood?
In Uganda you are considered a ‘girl’ until you have married and had a baby, then you are considered a ‘woman’! Jennie is herself a single woman of 38 years, and yet she is still considered a ‘girl’ by Ugandan cultural standards simply because she has not ‘produced’ a child from her own body. Somehow, being married and having children gives you an elevated status in society and even the church. Sadly the church does little to challenge the cultural view of what a ‘woman’ is in Uganda nor does it promote the fact that married or single, we are ‘complete in Jesus’ (Colossians 2:9-10). In the West, we are guilty of similar failings, though we perhaps have our own cultural bias.
In her teaching, Jennie drew our attention to Genesis 2:21-22 and the account of when God created Eve. What I had never noticed before was that God gave the same undivided attention to creating woman as He had man. In fact, he got man out of the way completely by making him fall into a deep sleep, perhaps not just for anaesthetic purposes! I have been blown away just by the thought of that intimacy and sole concentration God gave in creating our sex – we are not just an afterthought for good old Adam.
We were created out of a rib from Adam’s side, and as know, this also reflects our equal worth before God. Different roles, same worth in God’s sight.It says in verse 22 that God made a woman, not a girl, even before she had intimate relations with Adam, before she bore a child. God made a complete and beautiful woman.
In whatever culture we currently live, I believe that many of us are confused about what a godly woman should look like. The voices of social media, tv, movies and magazines are loud, our cultural voice can also be loud and often we don’t take the time to come into line with the God’s truth about how God defines a woman. Jennie shared much more than I can share in this blog but it was so encouraging to be reminded of our worth and responsibility before our God and King.
St Augustine said that ‘Our hearts are restless until they find their rest in You.’ As a woman or man, our worth, significance, acceptance and completeness come from the Lord, yet often we are trying so hard to please the many other voices around us.
You are God’s workmanship (Eph 2:10); He has fashioned your heart individually (Ps33:15 (NKJV), He has created you to be who you are today…In Christ we are complete today (Col 2:9-10).
Now that is something to rejoice about!