A former professor of mine at Colorado Christian University, Heather Webb (now Parkinson-Webb), has won a judgement of 300,000 against Mars Hill Graduate Seminary for sexual harassment and retaliation following filing for divorce following the adultery of another former professor of mine, Kirk Webb, her now ex.
What a mess adultery leaves.
I remember sitting in Kirk's office one day talking about infidelity, my marriage and vision for what became Marriages Restored. We chatted some about what it takes for a couple to survive. He mentioned Heather's focus on their marriage vows and how intentional she was about recalling them. Dude, you should have listened to her.
I have two primary memories of Heather at CCU. She always dressed well. She definitely wasn't Old Navy casual. Ok, if that was one then this is one-A.
One-A. She shared about a miscarriage that she experience during our 96-97 school year. I don't remember anything she said. I just remember her mood, her vulnerability, her femininity in the form of a hurting mother's heart.
Two. She helped me to value the feminine voice. She was sharing one day about female writers that influenced her. Madeleine L'Engle was one. I enjoyed A Wrinkle in Time and a couple of other books by her. She also mentioned Simone Weil, whom I haven't read, but who said, "The beautiful is the experimental proof that the incarnation is possible." In other words, beauty lets us know that there is someone beyond this world and he came here.
As she was speaking I noticed I was discounting what she said. I came from circles where women could 'teach' but not 'preach'. The impact of that on me was to not value the opinions and ideas of a woman, Heather, who stood in front of my class of 60 or so.
As I realized where my heart was my mind drifted to my sixth grade daughter, Stephi. The question crashed through my skull, "Do you want people to discount Stephi the way you are discounting Heather?"
Stephi is brilliant. My daughter? Discount her? No way. At that moment in time, that wrinkle, I began to value the courageous, tender voice of the feminine.
A decade later, Heather is still speaking tenderly, courageously, calling the masculine out of the hearts of men.
Here is a link to a sermon that Heather preached following her divorce and return to CT.