By: Kate Beer | This past few weeks I have been studying Matthew for a course I am doing and have been so incredibly amazed at Matthews’s use of women in His gospel. It starts in the genealogy with the incredible inclusion of women, Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Uriah’s wife (who we know as Bathsheba). When digging further into the stories of these 4 women, in particular, we find that all of them came from complicated places or backgrounds, but the beauty of Matthews’s inclusion of them is exactly that, they are included.
The world could say they were bad examples and did some sinful things, which is true, however; God still used them by His mighty power to carry authority and used them in literally making the generations before Jesus. This past week it has got me thinking – if God can and willingly uses and transforms women like these 4, what are the qualities these women had and what does it mean for us as women, what does it mean for me?
One of the biggest qualities these beautiful women had was their faith and obedience to God amidst very challenging and difficult times. It would not have been easy for any of them but somehow they found the courage and trusted that God had them in His hands. I think another quality of these women is that they persevered, through trial and pain and at risk of their own lives they continued to seek him. Now, I am not saying that doing sinful things as they did is right, but I believe that neither is it impossible for God to use us women and begin to transform us from the inside out.
So, what does this mean for me? Personally, this means not listening to what others think or say about me first and being concerned first with what my Daddy in heaven thinks. It causes me to lay down being a people pleaser and to stare as a child into the eyes of my Daddy in heaven. Knowing these things requires me to have faith that despite the parts of me that I don’t like, wish weren’t there and in some cases despise, that God is still interested in me, in who I am, in transforming me and changing my heart. It also makes me realize how it is so easy to get fixated on things, not of Him and to find our comfort there instead.
What does it mean for us as women? I believe Matthews’s inclusion of women in the gospel is a cause to show the faith and righteousness these women had despite their own selves. I believe it means that God has a unique, tailored, individual plan for us and that He uses it for the benefit of our growth and blossoming! I believe it means that we need to look at examples of women in the Bible stories with more depth than we have before because it is easy for them to be overlooked. I believe we also need to stand on the platform God has given to us as women, beautiful parts of His glorious creation, and trust that He can even use us, and then let God do so!
Also, I think we need to work on our building up and encouraging of one another as women, sisters, mothers, cousins, aunts, grandmas, friends and to uplift each other, we are all on our own journeys and will be at different points of those journeys on highs or lows but wherever we are, whatever we look like, whatever our past, our God is looking for faithful women to trust that He can and will use us!
“This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham:
Abraham was the father of Isaac,
Isaac the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,
Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,
Perez the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
Ram the father of Amminadab,
Amminadab the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab,
Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth,
Obed the father of Jesse,
and Jesse the father of King David.
David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife.”
1 Thessalonians 5 v 11 “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
“God, today, please give me the gift of confidence in who you have created me to be. Help me to look past my history and to look forward into what you are calling me into. Help me to build up other women around me and to be faithful and true to you.”
If after reading this you feel stirred please take this challenge to firstly spend time waiting on and with God, to seek his face and then ask God to use you to build up those around you. Then, go and give that word of encouragement to that fellow woman and watch God blossoming new life!
Meet Today’s Writer: “Hi, I am Kate, recently moved back to the UK from West Africa and adjusting to life. Wife of a loving, faithful handsome husband and mum to 2 gorgeous boys. Blessed beyond words by God’s love for me with all of my history, mess and chaos part of his glorious redemptive picture and plan.” Kate has invited you to contact her via email: firstname.lastname@example.org