On April 22, 2016, Courtney Monson, a young mother of 4, was killed in a murder-suicide due to domestic violence and her late husband's addiction. She'd been planning her escape, but she never made it.
Courtney's grandmother provided daycare for my 3 kids for years. My kids played with Courtney's little sister, who was also in the in-home daycare. Courtney's grandparents are family to us. Courtney was young, spirited, independent, fiercely caring, and a great mom. Her death was a terrible loss -- the ripple effects of her death will last for generations.
Women are not playthings. They are not property. They are not prisoners (except when they are). They are not punching bags or scapegoats. They are not to be dominated for the benefit of their spouse. They are not to blame for their own assaults, rapes, abuse, or murders.
Women are smart, funny, clever, innovative, compassionate, loyal, and loving. Women are powerful and soft. Women are multi-faceted. Women are hard workers. Women are beautiful inside and out in every shape, size, and color. Women were created by God to be partners alongside men. Women were lifted up by Jesus as valuable and indispensable.
Protect and care for your women, as they protect and care for you. Stop the violence any way you can.
Narrative Lectionary Text: Ephesians 5:25-29
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, in order to make her holy by cleansing her with the washing of water by the word, so as to present the church to himself in splendor, without a spot or wrinkle or anything of the kind—yes, so that she may be holy and without blemish. In the same way, husbands should love their wives as they do their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hates his own body, but he nourishes and tenderly cares for it, just as Christ does for the church, because we are members of his body.