I wore this shirt outside on Monday. That’s a big step for me. Where I’m from, the words on this shirt conjure up images of a perfectly coiffed, intricately manicured, extremely well-dressed, and articulate lady. I am none of those things.
I don’t have the degrees, nor the disposition, of most women who are ministers of the gospel. My hair is untamed, and the only name-brands I own were handed down to me. I am more like a flame-thrower than a firefighter. I am just as likely to be petty, as I am peacemaker. So I felt some type of way about wearing this shirt. I don’t fit the mold.
You should know I didn’t pick this shirt out for myself. I bought a grab bag of shirts from the company that mass produces them. The other three shirts were pretty generic, but this one felt targeted. This one felt like it was daring me to wear it, like it was challenging me to feel worthy of this title, even though the shirt only cost me five dollars.
I am quick to disqualify myself. I say things like, “I’m gifted, but not that kind of gifted.” “ I write, but I’m not a writer.” So I told myself when I put on this shirt, “I am a Woman of God, but not that kind.”
But then I put on the shirt and looked in the mirror, and I saw something that I had previously ignored. There is punctuation at the end, and it is not a question mark.
I am a Woman of God, Period. Full stop. Yes, I have an afro AND an attitude, and those things, while they both need work, do not disqualify me.
Now listen, I’m not using this to announce a ministry. That is not where I am in my life. I’m writing this to say that my life is my ministry. While I am serving my family, and the community around me, I am ultimately serving the Lord.
My prayer today is for those of us who think we have been disqualified. We haven’t. It’s okay if you are out of uniform, and even if you have stepped out of bounds. Keep running the race set before you. Be who God created you to be. Period. Full stop!