A little more on our blessings


In recent weeks I have been writing about how blessed we are and how much we take it all for granted. Today I am going to focus on an area that we certainly take for granted — the rights and freedoms of women. This is an area that some women do not like to talk about and have very strong views on. This is not about views, this is simply about what we have and what millions of women don't have. We have freedom to make choices, they don't and many have died trying. 

  • I love to drive and can drive my car anywhere I want by myself — this is illegal in Saudi Arabia. In 17 countries married women cannot travel outside the home in the same way as men, including Afghanistan, Oman and Sudan. 
  • In Yemen, women are not allow to leave the home without their husband’s permission. I can and so can you. 
  • I went to university and studied the subjects of my choose — many women are not allow to attend university or restricted in what they can study.  In some parts of the world, schooling is restricted for girls and not for boys. 
  • I can choose to vote and I do not require permission from my husband, not all women are allow to.
  • I can divorce if my marriage turns bad. Not an option in some countries. 
  • I can marry for love — I will not dishonour my parents if I choose someone I want. My marriage is not arranged for me, I do have a choice, even if it is a bad one. I will not be married off as a young girl to an older man because my elders have decided that this will happen. 
  • If I am raped, there are laws to protect me — in Saudi Arabia and Morocco I would be charge as committing the crime and not seen as the victim. In some countries the victim is forced to marry the perpetrator. 
  • I can go for a walk on my own or with an unrelated male and never think twice about it — in some nations this would be considered a crime. 
  • I live in a country that is realising that abusing one's wife or killing her is evil and not to be ignored, there are many millions of women who live in abusive marriages or even killed in honour killings where the husbands and other men are never brought to justices. 
  • If my husband dies I can remarry and I can inherit what is rightfully mine. In 35 countries, women do not have the same inheritance rights as men when their spouses die. Even when there are laws in place, women are often pressured to give up their inheritance.
  • I can work in any job I like, in fact I have the choose of working or stay at home. In 18 nations, a husband can forbid his wife from working. And in Russia, for example, women are barred from 456 jobs, men are not.
  • I can walk about without covering my face, arms or legs — in fact I can select any fashion I like (whether that is good or bad, I still have a choose). In Saudi Arabia there are clothing laws exclusively aimed at women, men dictating women’s coverage of clothes and veils. 
  • When I work, I earn the same as my male counterparts.
  • Thirty states have legislation that designates men as the head of a household — as a single mother or widow, I can be the head of my household, this would be forbidden.  Women in 19 countries are legally obliged to obey their husbands.

There are other areas that we as women take for granted. In many third world nations women are still dying in pregnancy due to lack of medical care and access to hospitals and doctors.

Babies are still dying once born and infant mortality remains far too high in places in Africa.

You and I can seek help from a doctor and have access to high quality medicines. We also have ready access to women’s products such as tampoons that in many third world countries, poor women do not. Around 1 million women are suffering from obstetric fistula worldwide and many of these women are shunned and live away from the community as they families do not want to know them.

Millions of women are suffering from genital mutilation.  

We take the fact that we can drive a car, have easy access to a doctor or can vote completely for granted. Whilst not every woman wants to vote or even work, you do have a choose — think how you would feel if it was all taken away from you. Think what it must be like for the millions of women who have no choose about many aspects of their lives. And sadly, God never intended for women to be treated as second-class citizen, man have made that decision to control women. 

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:28)

We are truely blessed and we need to remember the millions of women who are not in our very fortunate situation. 

Comments

  1. What a good post Jo. We enjoy so many blessings that many women are denied. Yes, we do take them for granted. Thank you for reminding us.

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    1. I think because these women are so far away from us we forget they don't have all the freedoms that we do and that they are so restricted in all aspects of their lives.

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  2. Absolutely!! There is so much to be thankful for.

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  3. We take so much for granted. I daydream of a world where everyone has the same opportunities. Beautifully written.

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    1. I think its called Heaven as we will never see it on earth sadly!! Thankyou :)

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  4. Thank you for reminding of us the freedoms we take for granted. I don't think there are many of us who can truly understand what it would be like to have these taken away.

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    1. I have read a number of books about women in the middle east and it just sounds horrible (even worse if you are a Christian woman) - I just couldn't imagine it at all.

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  5. Thanks so much for this reminder that we should not take our freedoms for granted!
    Have a great week! :)

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    1. Thanks Lisa - we shouldn't because then we forget how blessed we really are.

      In Gods grace

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  6. ASSALAMU ALAIKUM LISA
    SISTER I AM MUSLIM. I HAVE FREEDOMS AND RESPECT THAT OTHERS DO NOT HAVE. SISTER YOU CANNOT BUNCH A GROUP (MUSLIM WOMEN ) INTO ONE BUCKET. I ADMIT THAT THERE ARE OPPRESSED MUSLIM WOMEN BUT THERE ARE ALSO OPPRESSED CHRISTIAN AND JEW WOMEN AS WELL. FOLLOWING AMERICAN MEDIA I CAN UNDERSTAND YOUR MISCONCEPTIONS. BUT PLEASE BEFORE YOU PASS JUDGEMENT, LEARN AND ASK QUESTIONS. WE ARE ALL BLESSED MUSLIM JEW AND CHRISTIAN TO BE WARY OF GODS PRESENCE AND MERCY. I RESPECT ALL GODS CREATIONS EVEN THOSE WHO DO NOT RESPECT ME AS I SEEK GODS HAPPINESS ON ME. I DO NOT SEEK THE APPROVAL OF OTHERS. ONE THING TO THINK ABOUT WHEN CHRISTMAS COMES AROUND AND YOU HAVE SCENE OF BLESSED JESUS AND HIS BLESSED MOTHER IN THE MANGER, IS MARY BLESSING ON HER NOT WEARING A VEIL???

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  7. excellent! thanks for reminding us via #smallvictoriessunday linkup. Pinning to our board and tweeting. Cohost, Shandra

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  8. This is a huge subject! And I think that sometimes women don't realise how much oppression they are living under until they are given freedom. They don't always realise how much their life is different and how much they are denied or missing. Satan loves it when women (and children) are oppressed or denied simple things because he loves to prey on the most vulnerable in this world. I think it's good that you have confronted this issue and reminded us of our blessings - and given us something to pray about, also - for women who are treated unfairly and abused in unfathomable ways.

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    1. And we don't realise how much freedom we really live in compared to other parts of the world and we don't appreciate it at all.

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