The Women’s Ministry at my church just launched our first official women’s Bible study today under the tagline “Redefining Superwoman.” I’m really excited about delving into this topic since I’ve been thinking and struggling with it for quite some time now. Our format will be to have large group teaching (by video for this series) and then break into smaller groups for discussion. Each week we’ll keep the same small group so that we can build deeper relationships.
Today we discussed what “superwoman” means to each of us and how we combat the pressure to be that identity. Here are the main things I took away from our discussion and as I thought about it more later.
1) I realize that as I take the “best practices” (sorry to use a business-ese term) from the other women I know in my life, I compile them together to form a picture of what I think I am supposed to be. I forget that while these women may excel in that particular area, they may not focus on or be as amazing in other areas. I put together this composite woman despite that and then feel frustrated and stressed out that I cannot be her.
2) What God has called me to do, He has equipped me to do. The first major key to that, however, is the “called me to do” part. He hasn’t called me to be all things to all people. He hasn’t called me to get involved in every good opportunity that comes my way. Even Christ was selective in what He chose to do, based upon what God had called Him to do. I put all sorts of additional things on my plate and then wonder why I can’t do everything!
3) When I fail to be authentic with others – sharing the good and the bad of who I am, sharing my struggles as well as my triumphs, sharing all of me – then I, too, take part in perpetuating the myth of the superwoman. So not only does being real with others build community and deepen relationships, it also helps deconstruct the notion that a “good woman” has her life completely together and in order.
I hope to keep sharing with you as we go deeper into the study. As always, I invite your thoughts. (Men, too!)
For more posts in this series, click here.
Photo: Me and my Shadow (2007)