May 18: Gender Appreciation

Read Genesis 2:1-25

“…male and female He created them.”

According to author John Gray, “Men are From Mars, Women are From Venus.”  Meanwhile, Bill and Pam Farrel tell us, “Men are Like Waffles, Women are Like Spaghetti.”  These authors of the last few decades remind us of something that God built into men and women long ago…differences.  We are not alike…and the differences are much deeper and subtle than anatomical or physiological.

It all started with the “aloneness” of man, which, by the way, God recognized as “not good.”  But in making a suitable helper, God made a human that “corresponded to” him.  This would be someone who was similar enough to make life interesting but different enough to make life crazy.

OK, part of that last sentence may sound a bit exaggerated.  But let’s face it, differences between men and women can be frustrating!  He can be so compartmentalized, and she can be so complex.  She can be too sensitive, and he can be too matter of fact.  Keep in mind, however, that God is the source of many of the differences we observe (and experience)!  Rather than allowing those differences to frustrate us, we must find ways to appreciate and celebrate them.

Those differences must be appreciated in every type of relationship.  Husbands and wives can be and should be grateful for those distinctions.  But so should the sister and brother.  Daddies and daughters and sons and mothers must also learn to celebrate the fact that they are different.

Keep in mind, however, that neither person in those relationships can use their gender as an excuse for sin.  Both boys and girls, woman and men are bound by the same instruction about loving relationships found in 1 Corinthians 13.  Whether male or female, all of us are to be patient and kind, but not envious, boastful, or proud.  Neither men nor women are to dishonor others, keep record of wrongs, be self-seeking or easily angered.  While it is true that a general gender tendency may make you more susceptible to a specific kind of action or response, it is not, therefore, automatically justified.

While appreciating gender differences do not use gender excuses.