Friday, August 31, 2007

"Ain't I A Woman"

e·gal·i·tar·i·an (ĭ-gāl'ĭ-târ'ē-ən) adj. Affirming, promoting, or characterized by belief in equal political, economic, social, and civil rights for all people

An earlier conversation with some acquaintances has prompted me to write a little about why this blog is important. It seems that the word "egalitarian" frightens people. Oh, I forgot something, only when it applies to "gender equality in the church." Yes, that is what I should have said.

Amazingly enough this type of prejudice (did I say prejudice?) occurs in many forms, sometimes subtly, but at times in an extreme "in your face" display that is both painful and unjust for the recipient.

History is full of examples of the "fight for equality" in the form of both race and gender, however, it is rare to find one that encompasses both. One of my favorite accounts is in the quest for equality for women, one woman chastised for both her race and her gender spoke out. Below is her legendary response.


by Sojourner Truth

Delivered 1851 at the Women's Convention in Akron, Ohio

Well, children, where there is so much racket there must be something out of kilter. I think that 'twixt the negroes of the South and the women at the North, all talking about rights, the white men will be in a fix pretty soon. But what's all this here talking about?

That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere. Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain't I a woman? Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! And ain't I a woman? I could work as much and eat as much as a man - when I could get it - and bear the lash as well! And ain't I a woman? I have borne thirteen children, and seen most all sold off to slavery, and when I cried out with my mother's grief, none but Jesus heard me! And ain't I a woman?

Then they talk about this thing in the head; what's this they call it? [member of audience whispers, "intellect"] That's it, honey. What's that got to do with women's rights or negroes' rights? If my cup won't hold but a pint, and yours holds a quart, wouldn't you be mean not to let me have my little half measure full?

Then that little man in black there, he says women can't have as much rights as men, 'cause Christ wasn't a woman! Where did your Christ come from? Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with Him.

If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these women together ought to be able to turn it back , and get it right side up again! And now they is asking to do it, the men better let them.

Obliged to you for hearing me, and now old Sojourner ain't got nothing more to say.

Why is this blog important? To reclaim the voice that God has given each of us. To "turn the world right side up again" and make a difference in the way God intended each of us to. God never intended for man to rule over women, and He never intended for women to sit on their gifts and abilities with God ordained longings, dreams and desires trapped inside of them.

As the mother of five girls, what I do now will make continue to plow the way for them. If women like Pastor Deanna and myself refuse to be a voice for our daughters (natural and spiritual) our legacy will soon deflate and the headway made by Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Aimee Semple McPherson, and countless others will have been in vain. WE are the revolutionaries of the 90's and early 2000's and prejudice has no place in the Body of Christ.

No, I am not a man hater! I love my husband, my children, ALL things feminine and I still think it is a man's job to kill the bugs! But I also believe that there will be no finer moment than when men and women stand together, side by side, and fulfill their destinies in Christ without comparison and without criticism.
Rev. Tara Sloan, Equal Time Co-Founder

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


I love being a woman.

I love frills.

I love pink.

I love to cook.

I love Jesus.

I’m a passionate Christian.

I teach Sunday School.

I’m married to a pastor.

I’m crazy about my husband.

I do not have a “butchy” haircut.

I always wear make up.

I have three kids.

I wear perfume every day.

I am pro-life.

I am not a man basher.

I love to get mani’s and pedi’s.

I work with many men and get along with them.

I’m a minister.

I absolutely love sex and not only refuse to withhold it, but – I ask him for it!

I love to wear high heels.

I love my kids.


I am completely 100% for the total equality of women.

Yes, it’s possible.

Pastor Deanna Shrodes, Equal Time Co-founder

Thursday, August 23, 2007

An Open Letter from Deanna & Tara

Dear Reader,

We are Tara Denson Sloan and Deanna Doss Shrodes, two women ministers with over 40 years combined experience. We work full time. We are conservative Christians. We are happily married wives of ministers, and yes --we are mothers, with eight children between us! We’ve been friends for about ten years now, encouraging one another in the calling God has placed on our lives and the many roles we fulfill.

We do not believe that total equality for women and Christianity are in opposition to one another. Many God fearing Christian women who are serving God with their whole hearts consider themselves feminists. However, these Christian women are not homosexuals (nor do they believe in the lifestyle of such according to biblical standards), these women are not masculine, they do not believe that abortion is right, and they are not male bashers. Is this possible? Yes! We are two such women and we know many, many others that we are friends with personally. We prefer to refer to ourselves as women for biblical equality due to the confusing label of feminist. Although we believe many things feminists believe they also hold some views such as the aforementioned that we do not believe at all.

We love and appreciate men. We are married to two wonderful men. Both of us also work in a male dominated field, and we are effective in our leadership there. We realize we need men, and we enjoy working alongside them. We do not believe the old saying, “Behind every great man is a great woman” is correct nor what God intended. We believe that our place is beside men, working together alongside one another -- not behind them. And in some cases, God calls women to lead in group where there are males, even such that may contain more males than females. Such is the case with Deborah in the Bible.

On this blog we will share our hearts with you regarding the biblical equality of women, our encounters in the world and the church regarding this, and we will have guest writers and interviews featured by friends and colleagues of ours who share the view that the Bible, properly interpreted, teaches the equality of men and women, and people of every race according to Galatians 3:28.

We are both egalitarians, which simply means that we hold to the Biblically based belief that one’s gender in and of itself does not privilege nor restrict a person’s gift or calling in the church or home. In the exercising of authority, we believe it is as much an opportunity given by God to females as to males.

Do not mistake – the slant of this blog is not that we believe that men and women are identical and there is nothing different about us. We acknowledge the basic general differences between man and woman. We do believe we are there to complement and benefit one another. (The “one another” is the operative word here…)

Although we share the view with feminists that any unjust treatment of women must be stopped, our view is not grounded in their philosophies (which sometimes do not mesh with Christianity such as their views on homosexuality and abortion) but instead biblical equality has a foundation simply through the proper interpretation of God’s Word.

We believe that all gifts and callings are given by the Spirit of God without regard to race or gender. We believe in that all believers stand equally before God.

In the New Testament we find continual repeated instructions that we both – men and women – are to relate to one another with mutual respect, humility, submission and servanthood, treating others as we would want to be treated.

So this is who we are. Come and join us as we share with you our biblical values, our struggles, our growth, our healing, our hopes, our dreams for the future.

We believe God is saying…it’s about time for… EQUAL TIME.

Tara & Deanna