Author Archives: holytension

Finding My Voice (in the wilderness)

Living in “complementarian” spaces was death by a thousand cuts. It can be hard to articulate, because each cut on its own sounds petty. Also, some of my pain is intertwined with other women’s stories, and it can be difficult to know how to talk about my own role without oversharing the details of their stories. This is my first attempt to put down in words the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual pain of living in patriarchal spaces most of my life. I think this old outline I recently rediscovered is a good place to start, because it shows my head space when I still considered myself comp.

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Sex Idol: Where Evangelicals Worship & Women are Sacrificed

In white evangelicism, the fanaticism, money, & extrabiblical rules that revolve around sex scream idol worship and the humanity of women is sacrificed on its altar. The evangelical message that married sex will fulfill you is really no different than the larger culture’s general message that sex with whomever, whenever will fulfill you.

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Age of Patriarchy: Desire of Woman & Rule of Man

When Adam and Eve chose the rule of humankind over the rule of God, they tragically ushered in the Age of Patriarchy

I fell in love with the erotic poem Song of Songs in the Bible when I was twelve years old. Of all the different ways a young girl could receive her sexual education, I’ll be forever thankful that mine was partially formed by a poem celebrating mutual male and female ecstasy. The Song revealed that sex was a good gift, and the refrain “do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires” taught me that it was something powerful to be handled with care. I do not regret those lessons. Song of Songs guided me well during my sexual awakening, so it’s fitting the Song again led me to a spiritual epiphany during my mid-life crisis of faith when I discovered the “desire” of the man in 7:10 is the same “desire” of the woman in the Genesis curse.

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Heaven & Hell on Earth

Would being in heaven with a God you hate be hell?

Before any discussion of hell begins, I want to establish first and foremost I believe God is Love. Goodness, Justice, and Mercy are bound up in the previous statement. I also humbly accept that I see in a mirror dimly. I do know my personal convictions about God have changed how I live this side of death, but I’m ok if my hot take on heaven & hell is completely wrong. There’s no way to know. As has often been quipped, ”The dead tell no tales.” That being said, I know the way heaven/hell has been taught and understood by many of my peers is often a stumbling block to their ability to trust God’s Love, so I think it’s a beneficial conversation to have.

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Holy Tension

The difficulty of holding the tension of seemingly opposed truths create many of the dividing forces between different sects of Christianity. Danger arises when you cling too tightly to one facet of truth, and completely lose hold of its complement. Extremes move away from the truth and love found at the cross.

I wish I could more easily convey a 3D image, because belief systems are complex and a linear spectrum oversimplifies.

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Sexual Healing in the Song of Songs

I wanted to share specific ways I found sexual healing in Scripture as a woman raised in a Christian culture that overwhelming focuses on male sexual desire:

1. The female singer of the song initiated sex. The poem opens with her desire:

Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth…
Take me away with you—let us hurry!
Let the king bring me into his chambers.

Song of Songs 1:2-4
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Craft and Conversation Table

A resource for community building, easily adjusted to meet group needs. We live in a culture of loneliness, paradoxically plagued by oversharing in digital spaces and trivial conversation in our real relationships. The Craft and Conversation Table exists to provide space for women to safely share about life experiences and beliefs that are rarely shared with others openly and honestly.

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