A whisper can be carried away by the breeze, the message lost as roars and hollers around fill the space it tried to claim. Whispers are the risky first steps, the ventures into reality of our inner lives, the worry, the fears, even our secret loves. We test to see if the world about us falls apart when a truth is spoken. As a child, as a young adult, I whispered some of my secrets only to be shutdown and taught that even my quietest voice was not to be trusted or valued. When I began writing, later when this blog became my roar, I found a safe space to allow my voice to grow in volume and intensity. I am learning to speak my truth and live into what that means, accepting all the consequences and freedom that brings. I didn’t expect to hear so many other voices, no longer whispering , shouting out stories that tear at our souls. Loud, angry, hurt voices speaking openly about sexual harassment, about choosing to suffer in order to keep jobs, fear of not being believed blinding them to their own power, The whispers have turned into a roar, saying no more no more no more.
I am heartened by the bravery of all these friends and strangers posting #metoo on public forever forums, sharing stories that break my soul and anger me that this problem is not so rare, that I am not special in my suffering. I am shocked and saddened by the sheer number, a scroll through my social media accounts show that women are finding the courage to share that they have been treated as objects time and again, that they have been silenced by a system that forces us to prove our claim rather than the abuser prove his innocence, even when the accusers number in double digits.
I have searched and searched for the upside to this political nightmare. I believe that God will use all to His glory but I could only see daily how more and more of His people were being marginalized and demoralized and put at risk through the divisiveness and hate rhetoric. Yet this president has accomplished one thing, whispers are turning into roars. Women who felt triggered by the comments he made on the bus with Billy Bush and found ourselves shrinking each time we heard his voice, have now said, enough. We found that more and more of us are feeling the same way and, my God, have like histories. It was only a matter of time before Harvey was outed as an abuser, who is next? Women are angry and talking out loud. We are pushing our way into that glory, to a space of no shame, to a celebration of all that it is to be women and children of God.
The men in our lives have choices as well. Their own voices matter in the midst of this uprising. Will they find their own voices and ask God’s forgiveness for the times they ogled the waitress, they hugged the cashier, they held the hand of the hostess as she took him to his table, made their own comments with their buddy at the bar, or didn’t object when another man did all of this? See all these women weren’t harassed by only a handful of men. This is systemic, we have a problem in how men see us, actually look at us. We are not bodies for male pleasure. Long ago a manager at a restaurant where I worked was instructing others in training on how to interact appropriately. He said, if you wouldn’t do it with your spouse watching, don’t do it. So simple, the perfect start for those men who respect their spouses. For those who don’t we have bigger issues to address, a different blog. Right now, the streets are filled with roaring women. Thanks be to God.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,