A few weeks ago this picture caught my attention. It was part of a news article about Afghan women protesting a new law set to go into effect in Afghanistan. “One provision [of the law] makes it illegal for a woman to resist her husband’s sexual advances. A second provision requires a husband’s permission for a woman to work outside the home or go to school. And a third makes it illegal for a woman to refuse to “make herself up” or “dress up” if that is what her husband wants.”*

The irony of the photo is that while the women are protesting their treatment as property in Afghan law, they are also submitting to one of the rather arbitrary laws of the land which states that women must not show their wrists or ankles in public. Each fist raised in defiance contains a tiny finger which grips the sleeve of their garment to ensure that the wrist is not bared in public. These women have been deeply affected by a restrictive culture. It is hard to extract themselves from the chains of their culture. I pray that they will find true freedom.

Galatians 3:24-29 says,

Let me put it another way. The law was our guardian and teacher to lead us until Christ came. So now, through faith in Christ, we are made right with God. [25] But now that faith in Christ has come, we no longer need the law as our guardian. [26] So you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus. [27] And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have been made like him. [28] There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female. For you are all Christians—you are one in Christ Jesus. [29] And now that you belong to Christ, you are the true children of Abraham. You are his heirs, and now all the promises God gave to him belong to you.

In this photo, one truly bold protestor releases the sleeve and allows her wrist to be seen.

NYTimes article.

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