I have felt at times that I wasn't particularly good at "staying in line" in the context of what a "female role" was in church, but I was a pretty lousy "renegade" too.
Truth be told, I seldom thought about it.
But lately, there are so many different things coming at me about prescribed places women belong, and men too, that I never even realized existed. I am meeting intelligent people who have interesting stories to tell about where they bumped up against the edges of what was expected and came away a little flounced, and maybe surprised. And perhaps a feeling a bit turned out.
Like the married couple youth pastor team who had difficulty explaining to a pastoral staff that they worked together as a team and needed to each pull a wage.
Apparently the pastoral staff that the wife came for free, maybe with a plate of cookies.
And the young woman who has observed throughout her life the gentle nudging off the platform of female deacons and elders. Why didn't they get to serve?
And the man who can find no purchase within ministry at churches, carrying a message that it is men's job to help their wives realize their life goals (oh! I LOVE this!).
And things that I haven't thought much about arise in realizing "oh, yes, I guess they are there," and I have never very well played into the role of abiding female, have I? or have I? Maybe I have played into it more than I even realize.