What if I referred to God as “she”?

No. Really. What would be your gut reaction to that?

My gut reaction the first time I pondered a sentence like, “God loves you, she wants relationship with you” was that it seems . . . wrong. When I examined the wrong, I decided that the feeling deep-down was that it seemed disrespectful to God.

Which was, of course, a revelation to me.

I know that God is neither male nor female; WE were created in God’s image.

But if it feels disrespectful to refer to God using a feminine pronoun, I think it is safe to say that that reveals the (sometimes) hidden feeling within (some) churches that women are inferior.

Language is a funny thing. It represents AND creates. The fact that English doesn’t have a human-yet-gender-neutral pronoun means that we have to choose a gender when we refer to God. So we chose “he” based on the Father imagery in the Bible. I’m honestly fine with that.

However, the feelings revealed by even considering God using feminine pronouns should give us pause if we think that both genders are equally respected within the church.

Editing to add:

How we feel about ideas tells us things about ourselves and our communities. If the idea of using a feminine pronoun for God doesn’t feel disrespectful to you, then I’m actually very happy that you aren’t carrying around the same baggage I am about gender and the church. However, no doubt the idea makes you feel something, and that something tells you something about yourself and your faith community. Maybe it is something that you are already aware of, but maybe it is something new (as it was for me).

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