Blackness was all around us. The night sky was brilliant in its glory, just like us in our youth. The haze of the city lights followed us throughout our Friday night, as my friend and I enjoyed a night out in the centre of Melbourne.
Little did we know that the night sky foreshadowed events that would scare us enough to run, and by run, I mean very fast.
He shouts to me first, "Hey you fine looking lady, you want to come over here?", "I'll show you a something a little special". I look at my friend and we start to power walk, as more utterly inappropriate words tumble out of his mouth. I tell myself not to turn around, its all good, we'll be fine.
Then we hear footsteps. They are loud, heavy and very close.
I glance over my shoulder and notice that they have begun to follow us. A whole wolf-like pack of men. Maybe, just maybe, searching for prey. My friend and I give each other a look. In that moment we both know what it means.
What is going on here?
I'm not one to generally feel inclined to giving someone the finger, or desiring to feel my fist make contact with human flesh. But, oh boy, in the heat of the moment yelling some obscenity or giving him the finger was all I could think about. I felt like waving it around a little bit, most likely up close and personal, in his face would have been perfect. And then proceeding to stick it up his nose. I hated him in that instant.
My Friday night was just one experience of the harsh reality for many women. The story of the treatment of women in history isn't a noble one. It has good moments in it for sure, but as a whole its terrifyingly confronting. In May 2014, Boko Haram kidnapped 276 girls from their school in north-eastern Nigeria, 57 have escaped, but the remainder haven't been seen since until recently.
A Chinese proverb states that "a woman should be like water; she should take no form and have no voice". In Hinduism, women have less value than a cow. In Islam, a woman requires three men verify her story in court. Her worth, or testimony is worth one third of a man's. This is not ancient history, this is the here and now.
While sitting in an apartment at the Gold Coast, I woke to the news that a woman had been repeatedly bashed by her ex-partner with a metal plate in a nearby street, while she lay trapped and injured in her upturned car. In the McDonalds I had just driven past on the same day, a woman was shot by someone known to her. Where does this global hatred towards women come from?
A special hatred
"For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places."
Ephesians chapter 6 verse 12 NLT
This assault on femininity- its long history and its absolute viciousness can be understood when we take into account the Spiritual forces of evil that we are warned against in the Bible.
If you turn your attention to the events that took place in the Garden of Eden, you will come to understand that women have endured a special hatred since Eden. Who does Satan single out for his assault against the human race? Eve. He could have chosen Adam, but he didn't. He set his eyes on Eve. Have you ever wondered why?
Many may know that Satan was first named Lucifer and in the days of his former glory he was appointed a guardian angel. "You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty" (Ezekiel chapter 28 verse 12) Lucifer was gorgeous. He was perfect in beauty.
This is the key. He was breathtakingly beautiful and that was his ruin. "Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and your corrupted your wisdom because of your splendour." (Ezekiel chapter 28 verse 17)
Pride entered his heart and he craved the worship that was being given to God for himself. Satan fell because of his beauty. Now his heart for revenge is to destroy God's beauty wherever he can in the natural world. But most especially, he hates Eve. Because she is uniquely glorious, captivatingly beautiful, and he cannot be.
She embodies the glory of God, alluring the world to Him. And there's more.
Satan despises Eve because she gives life to the world. Women nourish life. Satan brings death. His is the kingdom of death. Eve is the incarnate of the Beauty of God and she gives life to the world. Put those two together and Satan's prideful and bitter heart cannot take it. He assaults her with a special hatred. History removes any doubt of this.
The world tells us that "This is because of you. This is what you deserve." Well actually no, its not. These things happen because you are uniquely glorious and powerful. You are a major threat to the kingdom of darkness. But be encouraged!
There is One greater than your enemy!
The God of the universe wants you to know this. You are a Woman. The crown of creation. Eve's daughter. A beauty. A glory. A revelation. A powerful, scandalous truth.
So, what will you say to your daughter, mother, friend, lover, when she is told that the world dislikes her beauty, the very truth of her being?
I've got a good one.
"You is kind. You is smart. You is important." (The Help)
You are a Woman.
Emily Black is passionate about writing and seeks to write raw, authentic and timely pieces that disturb and comfort, engage justice and fundamentally empower.
She is currently studying a Bachelor of Arts at The University of Melbourne and actively desires to pursue a life of untainted freedom through Jesus Christ.
Emily Black's previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/emily-black.html