Gender: Being Missional and the Reign of God
People, usually Christians, will often say to me something like, ‘Are we really going to start talking about the gender issue again?’ ‘Hasn’t everyone basically made up their minds by now?’ Or sometimes people say to me, ‘Why talk about this topic? It just causes division. Let’s just focus on the gospel’. Others chime in by saying, ‘There is no issue with gender. We are just making a big deal out of nothing’. A couple of months ago I was even taken aside by a colleague and gently told, ‘Don’t you think all this talk about gender is affecting your reputation? Maybe you should post on Facebook less frequently about this topic’. I was too taken aback to ask then, approximately how many times a month posting on Facebook about gender would be deemed to be appropriate! When I do interact with social media around the topic of gender, I am usually surprised at how much this issue is still a hot topic for so many people. I now know that putting a statement out there on a gender-related issue will mean that pretty much everyone will take some kind of offence with what is said or at least have a very strong opinion on the issue. That’s all fine but why is that? Why does this topic elicit from people such a strong reaction? Even if it elicits complete apathy or a negation that it is important at all, that is still a strong reaction. If we step out of the confines of the Christian community we see that gender is in fact a deeply debated issue which people are still confused by and working through. These debates are occurring on a popular level where people express strong opinions and emotion on gender-related issues.... Watch Karina's presentation at the 2014 Annual Tinsley Lecture or download a PDF transcript here.