I believe in gender roles within the household. I do believe that women should cook, clean and take care of the children. Men should fix things when they break and take out the children to play sports and such. I’m not the type who wants to be a housewife, but I would love to take care of my household on top of my job.
Even though I prefer a man in leadership, I believe women are perfectly capable of leading. I have many female friends who want to pursue leadership in the church and I only encourage them to do just that.
One friend in particular, Helene Mauser, and I had a lovely talk about the matter of women leadership and our talk encouraged me to write this article.
Mauser is currently a freshman here at Whitworth University and will be the Stewart-Boppell-Village small group coordinator next year. Mauser made many good points about women’s leadership that people need to hear.
“Men and women have many different gifts and abilities, and I know that a lot of people are afraid to say that because they don’t want to stereotype anyone, but men and women are different,” she said.
It is not stereotyping to state that fact. Anatomically, socially and psychologically, men and women are very different. Lately women have been trying to be more like men. I find it ironic that feminists try hard to act masculine in order to have respect. I respect a female leader who acts like a woman and uses the gifts God has given her in a feminine way. Men should lead like men and women should lead like women.
We need both forms of leadership.
“They are different in how they see the world and how they relate to the world and we need both of those kinds of people in leadership positions,” Mauser said.
Mauser also believes that women don’t have to lead like men to be strong leaders. Women should embrace a gentler form of leadership. Women are known to be gentler than men. They have a motherly nature to take care of other people with comfort and compassion. The women who try to be like men are just adding to the belief that women can’t lead.
If a woman must act like a man in order to lead, then we are saying that a woman who acts like a woman wouldn’t be a strong leader.
“I’m not an outgoing, crazy person, but I was one of the stronger counselors [at camp] because I was willing to admit that that wasn’t me,” Mauser said. Mauser is the type who sits one on one with people, but also supports the outgoing, bubbly leaders and their style of leadership as well. I think people can learn from her about how to lead. She shows that being yourself and using the gifts God has blessed you with are the true ways of leading.
Women out there who want to lead, don’t try to be like a man. Be proud of your femininity.
Barnes is a freshman majoring in English and secondary education. Comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.