“But these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.” The words from Luke 24 keep bouncing around in my head as I tune in to today’s news.
Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and other women who stood by Jesus’ side all the way to the cross, while the male disciples ran for their lives, had come to Jesus’ tomb to anoint his body. When they got there, the tomb was empty, and they were greeted by two men in dazzling clothes. The men told them that Jesus had risen from the dead, and remembering the way Jesus had explained how his life would unfold, they knew it was true. He had risen! So, they ran to tell the men.
As Matthew tells the story, Jesus himself sends the women to proclaim the good news of the resurrection. Sure, the testimony of women was considered worthless back then, but Jesus entrusted them with the greatest testimony of all time.
And the men? When they heard what the women had to say… Well, these words “seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.”
As a woman preacher, I’m thankful that the people in my congregation take what I have to say seriously. To my knowledge, my words aren’t dismissed as nonsense. Mary Magdalene’s problem isn’t my problem. After all, it’s 2016, right?
And yet, I watch the news of the day and I’m reminded of those for whom the testimony of women "seems to them an idle tale."
Why do so many women still have to endure this crap? Why, whenever women dare to confront sexism or misogyny, does it “seem to them an idle tale?” Why, when women speak the truth about their experience of harassment, abuse, rape… why does it “seem to them an idle tale?”
I’m sick to death of women being dismissed, discredited, and dissected whenever they dare to speak truth to power, challenging male domination and violence that is alive and well in the United States of America. Will we ever get past this?