One time I was driving on the 5 freeway on my way to Portland and I was listening to Jen Hatmaker’s For the Love podcast. She was interviewing author and speaker Rachel Held Evans. I cried throughout the entire interview.
Rachel inspired me.
Rachel gave me hope.
Rachel helped me understand the bible and my potential relationship with it.
I started to devour anything Rachel had written. Her books Inspired and A Year of Biblical Womanhood taught me stories about resistance, revolution, and women in the bible. I laughed and cried through them both.
On March 4, 2019 the world lost one of the most visionary and inspiring writers and speakers of our time. Rachel Held Evans died at the age of 37.
Her books ‘Inspired’ and ‘A Year of Biblical Womanhood’ were life changing for me and my understanding of Christianity and women in the bible.
It is because of Rachel’s writing that I discovered that I am a prophet. “Biblically speaking, a prophet isn’t a fortune-teller or soothsayer who predicts the future, but rather a truth-teller who sees things as they really are – past, present, and future – and who challenges their community to both accept that reality and imagine a better one.”
Her ability to help me make meaning of the Bible and the Christian faith has been one of the greatest gifts I have received this lifetime.
One of my notes in her book Inspired says, “The story of feminism is so complicated it reads like a jacked up version of a Grimms fairy tale.” I noted this after reading her words about spiritual maturation and how we sort truth from untruth.
This tribute from Kerlin Richter about Rachel will tell you a little bit about who she was as a woman and an inspirer. Give it a listen when you have a chance. It reminds us to love and connect and reach out and say, “I love you” and “I see you”.
I will continue to hold Rachel up in my prayers as I have for the last several weeks. To her husband Dan, her mom and dad, and to her 2 precious children…I don’t know if you will ever read this but know that your wife/daughter/mom impacted more people than you can ever dream.
She was a magical, graceful Woman of Valor, eshet chayil.
It’s Monday, cause some mayhem…expand your reach…raise some hell.
Dr. Melissa Bird