Jesus Feminist {a review}

jesusfeminist In her book, which releases next week, Sarah Bessey writes that Jesus made her a feminist. Well, Sarah Bessey made me a feminist.

Some of you may remember my mentioning an article that she wrote for She Loves Magazine, earlier this year. Her piece made me cry, and it made me realize that if this was what feminism was, I wanted in. This book is no different.

In my experience, it is difficult to engage with a topic with excitement, joy and hope, even while knowing that many will struggle with my terminology, to say nothing of my conclusions. Sarah has mastered the art of marrying winsome words with patience, love and great faith in Jesus. She is so admittedly human, so willing to listen as well as speak, so gracious.

But oh, she is bold. If this book doesn't make you think, you aren't paying attention. The stories, statistics and biblical examples she shares had me in tears. Though she is passionate, she never hits me over the head. She begins, in fact, with an invitation to sit around a metaphorical bonfire and talk about these things. As she writes, I can feel a sisterly arm drape around my shoulder.

It is so easy for me to become caught up in my own story, in my church, in my community, in my country, while within my sight, daily, my sisters are living a very different reality. It's not all about speaking in church and women's ministry, though that is part of it. It's about value, worth and humanity. It's about unspeakable things done in the name of God. I want to lean into the discomfort, along with Sarah, until my heart breaks and my hands know what to do.

Sarah's own story, so lovely, heartbreaking and in-process, reminds me of what it is to be a woman, complete with all of the messy glory. I am not a mother, or a wife, but she whispers to me that I am no less a woman, I am no less loved and valued and accepted and whole. I don't hear this often, and it is a gift.

As I came to the close of the book I said, aloud, that this would be "one of those books." A book that inspires action, hope and a new kind of sight.

Decades after Dorothy Sayers penned "Are Women Human?" (spoiler alert: yes), we continue to discuss these issues, worry over them and ignore them in view of tradition. I invite you to sit with Sarah and I, by the fire, and talk about Jesus and His lovely creations, these people made in His image, male and female. Regardless of your position, I promise food for thought, for those whose minds are hungry.

You can order the book here.

And if you haven't, check out Sarah Bessey's blog. She's one of my must reads.

(After much begging, I did receive an advanced review copy of this book, it is my honor to give my honest thoughts.)