At the moment I am in transition between jobs. I am leaving local government after 12 years, and taking up a new role in mental health. It’s an area I am really interested in, and hope my background experiences and work as a social worker will help me make the right decisions, when I am working with commissioners to plan NHS mental health services for the future. It can be an influential role, and its quite political, so some of the skills I’ve been learning are about patience, and slowly influencing through quiet preparation and thorough research. I’m impressed with how seriously the NHS takes research evidence. I am an intuitive type of person and can’t always explain very well why I think something is right, and am learning to communicate more clearly with rational types who require more than a “gut feeling” about an issue!
However when it comes to other areas of my life, being intuitive is helpful. For example deciding on what you should be doing with your life is not easy, and often I think it’s better to just go with the flow! Sometimes though a nagging voice in your head asks you to stop and reconsider your options. At the moment I am also trying to work out if I am being called towards ordination. I am not sure yet, but considering it seriously. Part of the process is intense soul searching about if you are in tune with God’s wishes.Through some of the reading I’ve done, I think its common for women to really question that calling before taking it seriously.
That’s why I am delighted about today’s news (not just Germany winning the world cup) but that for women serving in the Church of England it is now possible for them to serve as Bishops if they are called to do so.
If women are allowed to serve as leaders in the church then I don’t personally think we should put artificial limits on the type of jobs they get to do. Jesus was pretty clear that noone is “superior” in a Godly organisation anyway, and being a Bishop has to be a tough job to take on. If someone is called to do that job, who are we to argue? I’ve worked for some excellent senior women in the NHS and local government however I also know recent research about management of business shows, it makes for a better team when both genders are represented equally. In the UK we are also role models for the world, and women in developing countries really need to know that God loves everyone the same, what better way to demonstrate this?
I find Psalm 139 really lovely to read, and at the moment its really reassuring me that God has a plan for my work. (it’s worth looking up the whole chapter)
“1 You have searched me, Lord,
and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely.
5 You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.”