‘God is beyond gender, woman has the opportunity to reflect something about God that man cannot do as well and vice versa. Somehow it takes both man and woman to reflect the image of God. The man reflects that God is one who moves and the woman reflects the beauty of God as one who connects.’ ~Tom Varney
Tom Varney was my dean at CCU when I was a counseling student and graduate assistant. He pastors a small church in Morrison, CO now among other things. This quote was significant to me because the predominant message I heard culturally in my twenties was one of androgyny. Androgyny was touted as being above gender or neither masculine or feminine. Our gender was something to overcome not to be celebrated and embraced.
Let's take a look at gender differences.
1. Manhood and womanhood has to be defined in a way that gets stronger with age. Our character can increase as our physical strength and beauty decline. Maturity in gender is defined by much more than our brawn or curves.
There is something about what each male and female brings that when fit together brings a more complete picture of God. So individually we are a reflection of God but there is something significant about the way a man and woman together reflect God.
Joy is related to gender. Most of us don't like what our gender requires of us at times. Yet we are made to reflect God with unique capacities. This has to go beyond gender roles to what is deeper and richer in the masculine and feminine souls.
The body is a parable of the soul. In a sense sexual imagery is used to define non-sexual realities. Men move, women receive. Men enter and women surround. Now of course women move and men receive but there is a predominant reality that when men avoid moving and women avoid receiving that problems arise in the relationship. Our souls and our bodies are knit closely together.
Our next post will talk more about the specifics related to the masculine soul.