Applying Paul’s Teaching on Head Covering For Women

 

Paul taught that Christian women should wear a covering on the head. This was based on his understanding of Genesis chapter 3. The headship of man over the woman is established in verse 16 of the chapter, which reads, “Unto the woman He said,’ I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception. In sorrow thou shalt bring forth children, and thy desire shall be for thy husband, and he shall rule over thee”. The veiled head covering in the day of the Apostle Paul was not simply a demonstration of a woman’s modesty, as many suggest. It was an acknowledgement of a correct understanding of God’s creative order. This does not mean that a woman is of lesser importance than her husband. The Bible says in several places that in Christ all are equal. The statement that God is the head of Christ, in no way implies that Christ is less than God the Father. It cannot. Both are God. They are equal. In the same way, the headship of the man does not imply the inferiority of the woman. Man and woman are equal before God. However, they do have different roles. It is the matter of order that God has assigned the man to be the head of the woman. His role is to lead her and he is to protect her. 1 Corinthians 11 clearly demonstrates why women should wear a covering upon the head. It is because the man is the image and glory of God, while woman is the glory of man (verses 8, 9). Verse 10 tells us that this is something that concerns even the angels, though the text does not explain why. In the 2nd chapter of Timothy, we read the following words. (Verses 9-11) “In like manner also, that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls, or costly clothing, but that which is proper for women professing godliness, with good works. Let a woman learn in silence with all submission.” These verses, which address modesty, do not speak of the head covering. That is because head covering for women is not primarily about modesty, but is related to the acknowledgement of God’s authority and a woman’s place in creative and church order. This is the main reason why Satan came to Eve in the Garden, and not to Adam (Verses 12-14) “And I do not permit a woman to teach or have authority over a man, but to be in silence. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And, Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.” Our enemy, the devil, knew exactly what he was setting in motion. He did not go to the man. He went to the woman. His goal was to deceive the one person whose influence over the man would cause him to choose disobedience to God. By doing this, Satan was sure to bring humankind out of God’s creative order. Again, one must look at the situation from the perspective of order. If he were to attack the man, it would mean retribution from God. However, in the chain of command which God has established, man is the head over the woman, as God’s Word states in 1st Corinthians 11. This was done, not because the woman had less understanding, but because of the impact that losing her would have on the man. In order for Satan to accomplish his goal of usurping God’s place in the life of the man, the man had to relinquish his obedience to God of his own will and choosing. (See Romans 6:16). The serpent came to Eve, and influenced her by deception (or deceived her by influence); causing her to doubt the words which God had said. She believed the words of the serpent, and disobeyed God, falling to transgression. Her husband now found himself with a terrible choice. He could choose to follow his wife in disobedience of his own free will. The other choice was to live without her. He could have eaten from the tree of life and lived forever; that life, however, would not include Eve. How terrible a position this must have been. There can be no doubt that Adam was distraught, as anyone who has lost a spouse would certainly be! His decision would have been colored by his grief, and would be made in only moments. Adam certainly knows that Eve will face death at God’s hand, now. Adam knows that Eve will be taken from him forever. God had made Eve for Adam out of his own flesh and bone. She was his own body. He was responsible to teach and protect her. Certainly he believed he had failed in this. He likely believed that his place was with her, even in death. Perhaps he simply loved her too much to leave her. Therefore, Adam chose to remain with the wife God gave him, even though it meant death. He gave up his life for her sake. And, that is something that Jesus, called the second Adam, did for us. The difference, of course, is that Jesus had power over death. Adam did not.

The Bible tells us that a man is to love his wife as Christ loved the Church and gave himself for her. Certainly Adam knew how to do this well, for he had been formed by and taught by the Creator Himself. Eve had been made for Adam; literally taken from his own body. No other relationship claims such a beginning. Remember that all of this took place in the time when Adam knew no sin. He did not have that nature of sin that we all taken for granted. That means the choice to follow his wife occurred before sin. In other words, Adam makes this choice deliberately. What would cause Adam to do such a thing? I believe that, as Christ loved the Church, and gave Himself for her, so Adam did the same for Eve. Of course, Adam lacked the power to save his bride; where Christ had the power to save us. However, what Adam did can be seen as the final act of faith in his sinless condition. Just a theory, but it makes sense.

Adam honored his wife, and her place in creative order, and we should honor our place as well. This can be seen by the wearing of a physical covering when a woman teaches or prays. 1 Corinthians 11 clearly shows us this distinct order of authority. Let us read verses 8&9 again. The man was created first, the Scriptures say, and he is the image and glory of God. The woman is the glory of man. So, it makes sense to cover the woman (man’s glory) while the man (God’s glory) remains uncovered.

Paul begins the teaching in verse three of 1st Corinthians 11. He writes that Christ is the head of every man, man is the head of woman, and the head of Christ is God. Paul is speaking of creative order and headship. This distinction is important, because Paul is not discussing marital order here. Please take a moment and read verses 4 through 16.

Please note that Paul is not saying that a woman is to be covered because of a subordinate gender role. Some cultures teach this, but Paul is connecting head covering to prayer life. Read verses 4and 5 once again. It is clear in this passage that when a woman is praying or prophesying, her head is to be covered. Did you catch that? I hope you did. Not when she is at the church service, but when she has the active role! These are active tense verbs that Paul is using. Remember that this is a letter being written to the Church. This is an ordinance that Paul introduced to the Bride of Christ. Consider, too, that this topic of head covering was written immediately before Paul’s discussion on The Lord’s Table. This makes it a bigger deal than is Paul tacked this onto a discussion on modesty. Now, modesty is also very important, but I ask you to consider for the moment that head covering is a preparation for the Lord’s Table. Paul wrote about modesty when discussing the relationship between men and women. Paul writes about head covering here, because of its relationship to prayer and to the Lord’s Table.

The head covering is not the hair, (more on that later), nor is it an expression for the husband. There is no face veil, either. Paul is discussion our communion with God, our fellowship. It is about God’s glory.

Read verse 7. The reason for a woman to cover her head when in prayer is because she is the glory of man. Scripture teaches that man is the glory of God, while woman is the glory of man. Since man is said to be the glory of God, it makes sense that a man should not have his head covered when praying, because God’s glory should not be covered. Scripture teaches that woman is the glory of man. When a woman covers her head in prayer, she is covering the glory of man. This is a great honor! It sends a message to the angels. Read verse 10. Consider this: The angels also cover themselves in God’s presence.

Paul illustrates the point by reminding us that long hair is a glory to women. This is a natural covering that demonstrates the importance of head covering. But, Paul is not saying that long hair is the covering for prayer life. Hair covers the head always. Women of all religions grow their hair longer. When we see two people with long hair, we expect they are both women. It seems to be instinctive. Paul is not speaking of a covering that stays on the head, but one that can be placed on the head when praying. So, we are talking about cloth here.

Some suggest that head covering is for modesty, but Paul discusses it separately. Others have taught that head covering was to keep Christian women from dressing like pagan women. Not true. Not what is taught in God’s Word, so we won’t discuss that further. Some have suggested that it was to avoid disagreement in the Jewish community. To this I say that Paul was not one for suggesting that the early Church ( or contemporary) be like the culture in which the believers dwelled. He was fervent is encouraging believers to “come out from among them.”

It is clear that Paul was instituting the practice of Christian head covering to testify and illustrate the creative roles of men and women as regards the glory of God by having women cover the head when praying (or when taking the active role in ministry) but is it head covering, or may we apply the principle to another means of obedience? Can the practice be updated? This question has been asked over the years, and I would say that if Paul instituted head covering as a practice, we cannot apply it as a principle elsewhere, (as in the wearing of a long skirt).

What type of head covering?

Over the years we have had many types of head covering. There are many styles and materials used to create coverings for women to wear in the service. The modern Church does not dictate the style of dress for today’s Christian woman. I believe there is much freedom here. There are hats, scarves, snoods, and more to choose from. If you live in a culturally diverse neighborhood, you might like the head covering styles represented by your neighbors. Choose a style that reflects your sense of fashion, and that will be comfortable. If you like, add your chosen head cover to you every day style and model head covering to the next generation.

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Q&A with Victoria Griffin, Creator of Flooded: A Creative Anthology of Brain Injuries

flooded

 Hello and welcome to  this special edition  of  the blog.  For this week’s post, I am  interviewing my friend and fellow writer, Victoria Griffin, who  has recently put together  an anthology of  writings  on the subject of brain injury. I met Tori a while back  though a  writer’s community and thought  my readers here would be interested. But, there’s more. This is an opportunity for you to get involved in advocacy.    This project in being funded through Kickstarter. The link is below.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/victoriagriffin/flooded-a-creative-anthology-of-brain-injuries

Hello Tori. So Happy to have you speak on this topic.

Briefly describe for the readers what Flooded is about.

Flooded is simply  a creative anthology of fiction and creative nonfiction works on the topic of  brain injuries. It includes work of all styles and genres. The anthology is not merely meant to showcase memoirs or personal stories—though they will undoubtedly play a role. Brain injuries take many forms and are often difficult to describe. That’s why the anthology includes  many  genres to explore the experience of brain injuries and concussions, ultimately unifying to create an expansive, truthful representation of brain injuries.

 Sounds like a wonderful project, Tori.

What inspired the anthology?

In January of this year, I took a hit to the head during softball practice. I immediately felt drunk, but the next morning I had difficulty speaking and walking. My trainer assured me the symptoms would be gone within two weeks, after which the doctor assured me they would be gone within three. After four months, two ER visits, an accidental  drug overdose  and a desperate struggle to graduate without being able to read or perform basic, everyday functions, I finally recovered.

On the surface, the concussion cost me my senior season of softball and four months of my life. But in reality, it left scars so deep, they are difficult to describe—which is what prompted me to write about the experience. When I realized there was no publication solely dedicated to brain injuries, I began to truly consider how concussion awareness is approached—with facts and statistics—and how inadequate that is.

So, this was inspired by your own head injury. Wow.  Must have been hard to deal with. I’m sure many people would have given up. 

Tell us what  it was like to live with a concussion.

A brain injury is difficult to describe. I feel like I could write a thousand pages and never capture the experience. I can tell you that my mom said I sounded like a four-year-old, and my dad said my eyes were always dull and lifeless. I don’t remember the first two weeks at all, and after that I would “lose” gradually decreasing sections of time—a few days at first, then a day, then hours, and eventually minutes. When I finally gained enough strength to walk around the apartment, I would get stuck on the stairs and have to call for help. A sound as small as footsteps would send me into sensory overload attacks—which I came to call flooding—during which I would involuntarily curl into a ball and be unable to move, speak, or breathe.

Scary. Go on. 

Have you ever been near to drowning?

I did nearly drown once, yes.  Terrifying.  How was  the concussion like drowning?

Each time an attack happened, I felt like I was drowning. Getting air was more difficult than pressing through the heaviest backsquat I’ve ever attempted. And each attack lasted hours.

Still, all I’ve really described is the physical. Can I explain to you what it feels like to lose your mental capabilities? To lose your language? To not be able to understand words spoken to you? To feel paranoia so strong you can’t look anyone in the eye? To lose your emotions, so that all you feel are the artificial sadness and fear induced by the injury and medication?

I had my own brain injury as a child, so I understand completely.   More about that another time.    I’m glad that you   fought back and overcame the concussion. I know that writing can be very therapeutic 

Why fiction and creative nonfiction?

As I said, I can’t explain to you what it was like to have a concussion, not like this. I can’t tell you what it was like, but I can show you. I can write a story that makes you feel the fear of being alone when a flooding attack happens and wondering if you’ll get help before you stop breathing. I can write a story that makes you feel the overwhelming depression of losing the entirety of your identity. I can write a story that makes you laugh at the silliness of staring at a light for ten minutes because you believed it wasn’t there.

By compiling an anthology of fiction and creative nonfiction, we can use multiple genres, styles, and tones to truly convey the experience of a brain injury. Because it’s not what it looks like or how many people it happens to that matters. It’s how it feels and how it impacts the lives of human beings.

Anton Chekhov is attributed with saying, “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” Simply telling people about concussions and brain injuries is not sufficient to nurture awareness and understanding. We need to show them.

 So very true, Tori.

What could someone who has never experienced a brain injury gain from reading Flooded?

The anthology is not simply for survivors. While it will certainly be an outlet for them to express their personal realities, they are actually the group of people who (as readers) need the anthology the least.

When I realized I was concussed, my first reaction was to try to hide it because I knew I would be benched. What if I had read an anthology like Flooded? What if I had known what could happen to me? I was lucky. I walked away from my brain injury with no permanent damage, and my poor decision early on did not negatively affect the outcome. But it could have. And for many, it does. Reading an anthology like Flooded may help others to make better decisions in such a situation.

If you have not experienced a brain injury, you might in the future. Or a family member or close friend might, and they will not be able to tell you what they’re going through, not until it’s over. What if you had the opportunity to gain insight into their struggles? I know my friends and family would have leapt at the thought of learning anything about what was happening inside my body and mind.

Concussions don’t just happen to athletes. They happen after a fall or a car accident. They are a part of life that needs to be addressed in literature. At the very least, gaining empathy for another’s pain and struggles makes you a better, more understanding person. Who doesn’t need that in their life?

 Tori, that is very insightful. 

How did your concussion change your life?

The concussion completely altered the course of my life, directly and indirectly. Because of it, I wound up discovering a new passion—freelance editing. But the most significant result of the injury is its impact on my perspective and my worldview. I now have a much deeper understanding of the sorts of challenges some people face every single day—those who struggle with depression, anxiety, and learning disorders.

I also have an incredibly deep-rooted appreciation for the people in my life. We all know that extreme situations bring out the best and the worst in people. I saw people behave in ways I never would have expected. I saw true cruelty, to a degree I didn’t believe people to be capable of, not from strangers but from people who had been in my life for years.

But I also saw extreme compassion and sacrifice. I saw a few friends and family members put their lives on hold to make sure I made it through. From driving across the country to staying with me when I was afraid of what might happen during the night, I can never repay those amazing people, but I will spend the rest of my life trying. And now, I consider of every person in my life, would they be the one to make sure I kept breathing when an attack hit? Or would they be the one to step over me and leave me alone?

 

What challenges do you expect to face in creating the anthology?

Of course, raising sufficient funds to create the anthology is the first challenge. Spreading the word about the project and gathering interest is a trying process, but the incredible amount of support the project has already received from writers, athletes, and the online community makes me incredibly optimistic.

The next challenge will be selecting pieces to fill the anthology. I published my first piece my junior year of high school, and I have six years’ worth of experience with literary journals, magazines, and anthologies. The amount of talent in the literary community is astounding, and when combined with a topic that elicits deep emotionality, I have no doubt the quality of submissions will be superb—and will make choosing 80,000 words of fiction and creative nonfiction a difficult task.

Perhaps the greatest challenge I anticipate is the promotional aspect of the project. Once the anthology is complete, we will need to shout it from the rooftops and get the work into the hands of readers. I have experience promoting my own work, but this is a whole new level. That’s why I’ve allocated a promotional budget to be used for services such as a professional blog tour, cover reveal, and promotional plan. While I foresee challenges in promotion, I believe that the quality of the work and the significance of the work will ultimately entice readers.

 Sounds wonderful, Tori.  Tell us more.

How does Kickstarter work?

Kickstarter is an all-or-nothing crowdfunding platform, which means we set a budget, and if we are a dollar short of that goal, we get nothing. For that reason, the budget I have set is the bare minimum we need to create the anthology. I have also set a target budget, which is the amount it would take to give the anthology the treatment I believe it deserves and, most importantly, to pay contributors an amount that is fair to their work and their talent. Keep in mind that the actual project budget is only 74% of the total budget. The other 26% goes to Kickstarter fees and rewards fulfillment.

What do backers receive in return for supporting Flooded?

Rewards! By supporting Flooded, you become a part of our family, and that does not come without its perks. Your reward will depend on your pledge amount. Examples of rewards are inclusion in thank-you sections on victoriagriffin.net and in the print anthology, a special “behind the scenes” eBook, 25% off editing services, a custom journal, and of course, the FloodedAnthology itself. Dedicated contributors even have an opportunity to receive a “perfect copy,” delivered three months before regular distribution and signed by every single U.S. contributor—an offer that will never be available again. T

 

What’s the breakdown  on how the money is used?

Other than Kickstarter fees and rewards fulfillment, the budget will cover cover art and design, interior layout, Submittable fees, editing and proofreading, promotion, and of course, contributor payments and copies.

How can I help?

Spread the word! Share a link to the Kickstarter page on social media. Tell your friends and family. Help us to turn this project into a movement. And of course, you can visit the Kickstarter page yourself, and pledge to support the project! We would love to have you as part of the Flooded family.

 Tori, thanks so much for stopping by.

 

We’ll have  my own story on brain injury in an upcoming post. Right now, I’d like to talk to you, my loyal readers. Friends,  may I ask you to consider joining this project? Please do check out the Kickstarter page and prayerfully consider getting involved with   Flooded.

Prayer For Our Nation

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.  (2 Chronicles 7:14).

I am deeply concerned over the state of affairs in my land.  My people  are no longer  bending on their knees in prayer before God but are  railing against one another in anger and in pain.  Gone are the days when Christians lament for their fellow man and woman. Instead,  the Body of Christ is at the forefront of political and social  actions.  They pitch insults at those whose views and cultures are different with such  vehemence that it makes even the fiercest  in our society look like a saint. Do these Christian people really  think this is how God’s children are to  behave? Where is the love that we are to show? How will the unbelievers see our Savior if we do not walk in love?  It breaks my tender heart. We cannot legislate good behavior or right choices, and we cannot demand that  others acquiesce to our world view. The only thing that will change the hearts of our people is the  saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.  What that means is that we must get off the political action lines ; stop  fussing at  those who differ from our views on social media, and commit to a life of prayer. When will we leave the work of the Holy Spirit to the Holy Spirit?

There are many difficult issues, it’s true but I recently heard something that shook me to the core. Someone suggested that  the Church could be forced to change its views to keep up  with progressive times.  While the Church may re-examine issues and teachings, the idea that the government could  interfere with this is terrifying. Look at those countries where this has occurred and you will find the religious freedom  was lost. I pray that  this never happens here, but we must not take our freedom for granted in a world that is increasingly secular.

Epilepsy and Disability

 

epilepsy-aware-2016

An important question that maybe asked is how to qualify for disability benefits with epilepsy ?
Under certain conditions an adult with epilepsy may be eligible for disability benefits from social security. The Social Security Administration receives many applications from people for disability coverage. Depending upon the type of seizures and the frequency of them, it is possible to receive benefits. Epilepsy is not necessarily a disabling condition, however it can be. A person seeking disability benefits because of a seizure disorder, must go to the Social Security Administration for evaluation. When the case is evaluated it will be assigned to a claims evaluator. This person will assess the information to find out if in fact the person applying for disability benefits does in fact qualify to receive them. That means that a person who is seeking such benefits must be prepared to provide evidence as to the need. The evaluator will be looking for information on the diagnosis of epilepsy along with a detailed description of the nature of the seizures, and all the symptoms. These all your waiter will take a statement from the doctor about your case to collect information about the frequency of the seizures and all medications that have been prescribed. This person will probably ask you about witnesses in other words he or she will be asking who has seen the seizures. The examiner will be looking for the EEG results, and any more information that can be provided about other treatment and your response to them. This may include blood work. Another consideration will be whether or not you have been compliant with your medication treatment over the past months. The examiner is looking to determine your level of impairment. In order to qualify for disability benefits based on convulsive epilepsy you would need to show that you have at least one seizure a month, a tonic clonic or grand Mal seizure. These should be expected to be seizures does it come the daytime and have a loss of consciousness or nighttime seizures  that interfere with daytime activities.
Adults who have partial seizures may meet the standards required f that person has at least once a week in spite of compliance with medications and those seizures interfere deeply with daily routines and cause a display of abnormal behaviour.
In my own case, my epilepsy has never been disabling. At my worst I had three to five seizures a year and although they were tonic clonic, they did not significantly interfere with my life. Therefore I have never been a candidate for disability except perhaps when I was pregnant.