The Balancing Act

In today’s world, women hold a multiplicity of roles. Ngozi Cadmus writes how faith in God can help women manage the home/work/life conundrum and experience fulfilment

As Christian women, we all want to hear those timeless words from the mouth of our King: “Good and faithful servant”. In personal development, success is not defined as the attainment of the goal but as the journey towards the goal. This perspective is very encouraging, but I would challenge it and say it is not how God views success. 

Scripture is clear that we, as children of God, must obey His commands, and anyone called by Christ’s Name will be judged. Thus, a good and faithful servant becomes the standard every Christian woman must aspire to. Have you been faithful to God’s commands, to the instructions He has given you to fulfil your purpose on this earth? It is true that the most expensive place is the graveyard, because so many people die with their dreams, with the purposes God intended them to complete but they failed to. Then it is fair to say that whatever your hand finds to do, God expects you to remain diligently faithful to its completion and to do all things for His glory. 

Women in Britain have had to become multifaceted. They perform many roles and appear to move seamlessly between each one, depending on the context and on the demand of the function. But, when a critical eye is cast, the roles are not as fluid as they might first appear, and so many women, especially Christian women, feel they have to choose one role over another. Can they be both businesswoman and mother? Both wife and minister in their local congregation? Or do they have to choose between their professional and parental roles; their professional and ministerial roles; and their personal and ministerial roles? Is each role balanced, and can they give 100% in each role, or will aspects of each role be sacrificed to give themselves fully to the other role? These questions haunt most women because society and the Church have placed the bar of the perfect and ideal Proverbs 31 woman so high. 

It’s worth noting — given the various waves of feminism that have impacted the Church’s relationship with women — that men are never asked to choose between different roles. Men are typically judged by how well they lead their household and on their financial contribution to their households. Comparatively, women are judged by how they manage their homes and children. But that is not the only role women currently inhabit. Thus, there is no denying that women face a unique set of pressures our ancestors did not have to face, due to their more defined role in the household and exclusion from roles in the public sphere. 

There are many lessons we can learn from Deborah the Judge. Two chapters are dedicated to her and her feats. From her life, we can see she was not just a judge, but also a prophet, a mother to the nation of Israel, a worshipper, a warrior and a wife. She operated in these roles concurrently. When she instructed Barak, she gave a prophetic word of the impending victory of Israel whilst also judging Barak for his hesitation. Her ability to alternate between roles and still function in harmony is an essential skill we can acquire. 

What insight does Deborah have in successfully manoeuvring her diverse positions? Her identity was rooted in her Father. She understood her assignment and the roles needed to fulfil them. When they come to faith, many women never fully gain the clarity needed to complete the assignments given to them. They spend a great deal of time being a Jonah — running away, afraid of what they are being asked to do. 

To build resilience — the ability to bounce back from adversity — is to have a deep and unwavering understanding that God is for us, He is with us, and He equips us with everything we need through the Holy Spirit, His Scriptures and the community He has placed us in. 

Once it is understood that our identity in Christ is immovable and unchangeable, we are a new creation. God has given us the power to have dominion on earth through the daily renewal of our mind. We can control our thoughts and thus change our outlook and perception. 

If you struggle with your identity in Christ, success will remain an elusive concept that evades you, and the roles, functions and positions you inhabit will always be in disharmony. 

Ngozi Cadmus is a psychotherapist, social worker and business strategist. She overcame depression and suicidality to become a leading mental health and leadership expert with over 15 years of experience in the Mental Health sector.

Written by: Ngozi Cadmus

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *