If you're a woman chances are you've experienced pressure in some capacity to be more slim or thick, to get married, own a house as well as running it well, birth children as quick as the in-laws are requesting, have a thriving career, be outspoken and demand a pay rise above your male counterpart all by the age of 30....and that's pushing the age limit!
While there are some cases when pressure is a necessary force to apply, with the scenarios mentioned above which are everyday pressures young women and even those on in their years face in society today, it can be incredibly overwhelming and go as far as being damaging more than helpful.
Biblically speaking women are the child-bearers, the home planters and the helpmeet to the man, none of which are negative. What we don't see in scriptures are external pressures to becoming that which we already are purposed for (if God so wills). The growth and season for a flower to bloom cannot be forced or rushed, and likewise, the season a woman may be in irrespective of age cannot be rushed because in the right time what God proposes to happen will inevitably happen.
That does not mean one cannot have aspirations, goals, seek out that pay rise and speak up against matters that require our voices to be heard, it just means there need not be pressure to do so. Placing hyper expectations upon women can lead to feelings of inadequacy, anxiety and depression because what society has said should be attained or done by a particular time has not been obtained.
Not only do we face societal pressures with our career progression, marital status and whether or not we are on the property ladder. As a modern day woman in the times of movements such as #metoo, we face the pressures of being outspoken feminists, and if we choose to stay quiet or are not marching through the streets, then we aren't doing our fellow women justice. Not everyone is built to be outspoken, and while that show of confidence is great for feminist activists, it is also vital that we make an impact on a smaller scale too. Effective and powerful ways to exercise our strength as women are seen throughout scriptures with the driving force always being God.
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God shall help her, just at the break of dawn.
As a Christian woman, it is important to remember that through trials, tribulations and pressures one may face, God ultimately has our best interests at heart and His timing is perfect. Turning to Him and having faith is the way in which we can live a life free from pressures and operate at a pace perfectly set on the road to your future that's tailor-made by Him.
'For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.'
Words by Nateisha Monique