Why Covering Should Be Left to Umbrellas

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Umbrellas do a great job as coverings, people not so much.

If I had $5 for every time someone asked me, “Who (or what) is your covering?” {i.e. who do you report to and what gives you authority to minister, especially as a woman}, I could afford to attend as much grad school as I like for the rest of my life.  We are talking become a full-time serious life-long grad student.  For at least the next 20 years.  From a private villa in the Caribbean.

I know some folks have simply picked up poor terminology and what they really mean to ask is, “Are you in mutual, open-hearted, transparent, authentic community in Christ?”  But many, perhaps even most, are asking because there is a pervasive teaching that uses the term covering in any number of ways, most of which are oppressive to women and all of them are hierarchical in nature and contrary to the mutuality of the Gospel.   And they are just plain flat unbiblical.

“For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus…” 1 Tim 2:5  And the word men there is anthropos, as in human being.  So actually it reads, “…one Mediator between God and people”.

The conversation usually gets awkward and uncomfortable when I respond and assert my “covering” is Jesus. {You want me covered by man… no problem. Jesus fits the description.} The question then usually gets rephrased to ask, “Well, ur, I mean who are you accountable to?”  My response: “Hopefully the same person you are. God. And yes I have great relationships thank you for asking.”  Even though deep inside I’d like to fire back, “and you think it is appropriate to ask me this as the first question of introduction from a complete stranger, because?”

IGrace-bloggraphic-spirabuseseries.jpgI could go into a very long detailed biblical exegesis and explanation of all the history behind and biblical responses to the covering phenomena, but instead let me refer you to a fabulous article Frank Viola wrote on the subject that says everything I would explain and then some: Who Is Your Covering?

Other resources I have found helpful and/or encouraging:

The next time someone asks me what my covering is, I am going to be hard pressed not to reply, “Well, when it rains… my umbrella.”

Have a beautiful weekend friends!

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