Social media is an interesting force that we have to contend with these days. There are millions of people on these platforms who are sharing their thoughts, their wisdom, their foolishness, and their opinions for the whole world to read. Sometimes the words on there are profound and helpful and other times the messages conveyed are downright destructive. While social media provides us an opportunity to connect with others like we’ve never been able to before, I wonder if it really is as good as we like to think it is.
The other day, as I was scrolling on Instagram, I saw a post that said: “Men are trash”. At that moment, my heart broke. So many people had liked this post and the comments were filled with words about female empowerment and more messages of “yass girl” than I could count.
Before we go further, I do believe that women are incredible people who deserve to be honored and celebrated. I believe that women have been marginalized and treated inappropriately for years and, unfortunately, this trend continues to be perpetuated. I believe that the heart of God is to honor and cherish women and that we, as followers of Jesus, should do the same.
And I believe the same is true for men. They, just like women, were created in the image and likeness of God and are deeply loved by him. This means that we, as the church, also need to love men.
What the “men are trash” post also reminded me of is the fact that we live in a society that is built on a scarcity mindset. Because we are finite beings, living in an earth with finite resources, we can put a limit on even those things that are infinite.
We have somehow gotten it into our heads that if men are respected and revered then women are put down and treated as second-class citizens. We’ve also come to believe that if women get respect, then that means that men are disrespected.
But what if we don’t need to live in this binary world? What if we can live in the duality that both men and women can and should be respected? What if we dared to break the mold and say that men are not trash, nor are women? What if we figured out how to live in the tension that no gender is superior to another—they’re just different.
Respect and honor, kindness and compassion are not finite resources that are going to run out any minute. We can have an endless supply of these in Jesus. Let’s break out of the scarcity mindset and accept that God’s love, forgiveness, and grace is more than enough for each of us, with enough to spare that we can spread around to those in our family, work, community, and church.
My hope is that one day we can get to the place where neither gender is seen as “trash” but is seen for the exquisite and precious beings we are.
How have you seen the scarcity mindset pop up in your life?
What can you do today to share the love, joy, and grace with another who is different than you?