I recently read that women run the western world.
Okay, maybe that’s giving us too much credit. But, the idea behind it, I find intriguing. The theory goes that when women are morally for or against a cultural phenomenon, that phenomenon is deemed either acceptable or taboo. It doesn’t mean that women control the world, it just means that their ideals are what make up the mainstream.
For example: porn.
For so long, porn was a man’s dirty little secret. Women mostly found the sexual medium to be repugnant to their marriages, families, towns, and women as a whole.
Times have changed. Enter Magic Mike, the story of sultry male strippers who…(do the details really matter when I just said, ‘sultry male strippers’?) and Fifty Shades of Grey, the tale of Ana and her “dark desires.” Now, this one movie and this one book are not the first female-approved porn mediums. But they are current cultural phenomena.
The overwhelming sale and consumption of this female-targeted, female-approved, and female-devoured form of soft(?) mommy(?) whatever-you-want-to-call-it porn has shown that women have accepted the once unacceptable. And the world is forever changed as the other half of the population expands her horizons.
What, in the name of God (literally) does this have to do with worship?
Women are the largest population in our churches today. And thus, the practice of worship attendance is culturally seen as a good thing, a thing that my “mother” would approve of. Even though attending worship is a diminishing act, the ideal is accepted.
Why then, is worship not a Western phenomenon? Where did Hollywood get it right and the church get left behind? Why aren’t talk shows interviewing nuns and choir directors like they are E.L. James and Channing Tatum?
I have a thought.
I think the influence behind Magic Mike and Fifty Shades of Grey lies in empowerment. These mediums allow women to exclaim, “I’m a sexual being, hear me roar!” They vault women to a historically male standing. And they filter the shame we’ve classically felt as a “weaker” sex. In them, we are allowed to be unruly, and, in that, we’ve discovered power.
Shouldn’t the worship of God be more empowering than a stripping Channing Tatum?
Are we as the church doing something that is keeping women from standing up and saying “I am a worshiper of God, hear me roar!”?
Are we building women up to have Kingdom Power, or just handing them a self-help book and passing out coffee?
Probably the latter.
No, I don’t have the answer to making worship a phenomenon equal to the surge of female porn. But there has got to be a way to light a fire within the women of Christianity that is just as spine-tingling as … let your imagination finish this sentence.
What is it?