Woman, He loves you.

Luke 1:46-55 And Mary said:

“My soul exalts the Lord,
 And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.
“For He has had regard for the humble state of His bondslave;
For behold, from this time on all generations will count me blessed.
“For the Mighty One has done great things for me;
And holy is His name.
“And His mercy is upon generation after generation
Toward those who fear Him.
“He has done mighty deeds with His arm;
He has scattered those who were proud in the thoughts of their heart.
“He has brought down rulers from their thrones,
And has exalted those who were humble.
“He has filled the hungry with good things;
And sent away the rich empty-handed.
“He has given help to Israel His servant,
In remembrance of His mercy,
As He spoke to our fathers,
To Abraham and his descendants forever.”

As a woman, there is an unlimited mountain of bullet points containing ways which we should be ashamed.
- our body
- our home
- our spouse (or lack of one)
- our parenting (or lack of children)
- our education
- our occupation
- our community participation
- our friendships

there is a mold that is specifically cast for women, ignorant of the fact that we are uniquely, fearfully, and wonderfully made. And then we become so guarded, so defensive, that we begin to take on identities that may not even be given to us.

"That woman breastfeeding must think I'm a horrible mother for feeding my baby a bottle. She is shaming me."
"That woman showing off her engagement ring must think I can't get a man since I'm still single. She is shaming me."
"That woman is so happy staying at home, but I have to support my family with my career. She is shaming me."
(and all of these scenarios can go both ways!)

There was a mold created for us, we broke out of that mold, then made a new mold to put ourselves in. It's all so twisted up and confused. Our identities have been hijacked by society, and by our insecurities. We are a generation of women desperate for a name that gives a security of inclusion, and assurity of distinctiveness.

God shows His love for and His power through His women over and over again through the Bible.
God created woman because "it was not good for man to be alone."
God delivered His people through Moses, a sign of the savior who was to come, by using midwives, mothers, and a sister to make sure he lived.
God chose to bring us a redeemer through a young virgin.

When he approached that young virgin through an angel, the angel said
"Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.”

And that's when I see it. That label that we are all searching for. The label that covers up "single," "married," "mother," "divorcé," "bottle-feeder," "breast-feeder," "depressed," "lonely," "searching," "hard working," "independent," "raped," "athletic," "career driven," "sexy," "shy."
Favored trumps them all.

Woman, you are not forgotten. You are no less worthy of affection, redemption, or purpose because of your breasts and uterus. You are precious to a creator that wants you in His story.