Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Male and Female

In Galatians 3, during Paul's discussion about the effect faith in Christ has on our understanding of the law, he shows that this truth impacts how societies traditionally thought of gender at that point.
23 But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. 26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.
Our inheritance in Christ is not affected by our race, our cultural status, or our gender. In Christ, we are all one. It's quite beautiful. 

Contrast this with Paul's words in Colossians 3.
9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. 11 Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.
I find it interesting that in Paul's discussion in this passage of being renewed in knowledge after the image of our creator that nationality passes away, social status passes away, and some religious statuses pass away. But gender is not listed as a thing impacted by this putting on of the new self in the image of God. When Paul talks about who gets the inheritance and the oneness believers share in Christ, he is clear that gender is not an issue. But when he talks about reflecting the image of Christ, he does not make this argument.

So I shall suggest some things from his silence in the 2nd passage. And they are suggestions. From silence. I know clearly the problem in drawing too many conclusions from such a thing. However, they are concepts that are reinforced in other places of Scripture. So I feel fairly safe in making these observations.

Here's my observation – in terms of the image of God, the distinctions between male and female are of value in reflecting the fullness of His character. Now, some conservatives may push back and say that the man, not the woman, was created in the image of God. I Corinthians 11 is the passage in question there. And some egalitarians may push back and say, no, Galatians 3 undoes any need for distinctions between genders. But I feel that the definining passage is the one written before it all went wrong, God's words over the first man and the first woman in perfection.
Genesis 1 26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
Here are the things I note in Genesis 1. First, God is talking in the plural. He's creating man in the image of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. In verse 26, God speaks of not only Himself in the plural, but man in the plural. Is this simply the plural of the male gender after the fall? No, it's plural of mankind, which He made male and female. Unless the translators did a horrible job with the flow of this chapter, that distinction is fairly obvious in the reading, especially when you get to verse 28.

So, in perfection, God created two genders to reflect the three persons of Himself. And just as there is overlap in characteristics of each member of the Godhead, there is overlap in characteristics of the genders. But just as there are distinctions between the three member of the Trinity, there are distinctions between the genders as well.

Here's what I think we lose when we are defensive over or downplay the benefits of two distinct (though overlapping) genders. We lose the fullness of God Himself. Some women really struggle with any language that seems to equate role or distinct characteristics with their gender. The reasons for that struggle and defensiveness can be complex and personal. Maybe it's triggered by background or personal experience. Maybe it comes from a fear that the moment you give ground on the subject, some man is going to take any capitulation and run with it. Or maybe you don't feel particularly feminine characteristics for youself. Depending on your culture and background, society projects secondary things as being feminine that the Bible doesn't necessarily project. I dress as many days as I possibly can in jeans, grey, or brown pants and one of my 10 black shirts of various styles. And my birkenstock sandals. Though I cook, my husband is a much better cook than me. Not all of us fit certain stereotypes. That's fine. And that doesn't undermine the importance of distinctions in gender.

The fact that God set up male and female in PERFECTION to reflect Him means something important. And I think we downplay the fullness of the spectrum of His character when we downplay distinctions in our genders. I've said it multiple times that God created His first daughter to reflect something particular about His character as EZER. Here's my long treatment of the subject.

I'm not going to apply this principle in the normal way, listing out what men do better or women do better or who should do this or that in the home. I always find those discussions annoying. So often they boil down to “this is what we do in OUR home and of course eveyone else should fit our stereotype.” I have cultural baggage with that discussion, so I won't have it here.

But here is where this principle has blessed me. When differences between my husband and I start to stress me, this principle reminds me that there is value to our differences and encourages me to ENDURE through it on our way to putting Christ's image on us. The image of God in us does not automatically make us as a couple respond to each other or our circumstances exactly the same way. Instead, it equips us to bring our different viewpoints and gifts on any given subject or issue to the table and work through it until he comes to my point of view.

Just kidding on that last phrase. I don't know what the resolution will be or if there will even be a resolution, but putting on the image of Christ definitely teaches us to bear long in the differences.

Seriously, if you don't VALUE your differences as a couple, the 2000th time after ten years of marriage he approaches something from a 180 degree different perspective than you has the potential to derail you totally. It didn't take long in marriage for me to say, “Um, men really ARE from Mars.” I perceived myself as the normal one (I'm from earth, not Venus, by the way) and my husband as the one with the issues. I read Shaunti Feldhan's For Women Only, and it was a God-send to me. I finally realized that my husband wasn't unique in his way of approaching things, but that he brought things to our marriage that, while I found difficult, most of his gender found quite normal. He started to seem less of an alien to me after that book. Maybe we both were actually from earth.

Of late, I've been studying a lot on how woman was created in the image of God to reflect Him as the Strong Helper to the man. I've been studying how the fall of man marred that in the woman and how the gospel equips us to reclaim God's image in His daughters as we are conformed to Christ. But I haven't paid as much attention lately to the real beauty of what my husband brings to the table. Understanding the value of the DIFFERENCES between he and I in particular and male and female in general has made a big difference in my heart. It keeps me from snide comments (either internally or externally) over the differences. It keeps me from despair when we still have so many differences after so many years of marriage. It reminds me to embrace and encourage him the way I want him to do me (and he does in a way that means so much to me).

It's too bad that there is so much gender conflict. In perfection, there was value to both distinct genders, and as Jesus' kingdom grows and spreads, I believe daily we will experience the call back to what it was in perfection along with supernatural empowerment from God Himself to reflect the fullness of His image across the two genders. I see tiny glimpses here and there already, pockets of beauty within the Body of Christ that make me hopeful that despite the public debates and controversies that something beautiful is happening and growing privately among us.
“Therefore, be imitators of God ….” Ephesians 5:1

Friday, September 21, 2012

An Alternative to Stereotypical Feminism Part 2

I ended my last post on God's redemptive alternative to stereotypical feminism with this paragraph.
The answer to the curse is not self-reliance. It’s God reliance. It’s not self-protection. It’s tucking ourselves under the wing of the Almighty. And it’s not staying engaged just to be run over.   It’s standing strong in our identity in Christ and helping our husband using God’s example as our strong helper as our guide. The answer to the need presented in the curse of Genesis 3:16 and well articulated by feminist movement is to put on the image of God. It is enough that the servant be as her master. “Be like Christ” is the sum and substance to the answer of the curse for women.
Note that my entire conclusion seemed to leave out single women completely. I said I'd deal with that later if others were interested. MANY women were interested, and so I now add these thoughts. First, singleness is hard, especially for the faithful Christian woman who loves God and His Word. Here are a few earlier articles I wrote on this topic.

It isn't good to be alone
In the waiting
All you single ladies

In terms of Genesis 3:16, the foundational truth that may in some way comfort and in other ways provoke is that the struggle articulated by the curse is nearly identical for single women as married. Your desire will be for your husband, even if that husband does not physically exist in your life.

I experienced that desire personally as much as a single woman as I did once I got married. I didn't have an object for that desire – just something I created in my head. But the desire nonetheless dominated and defined my life prior to marriage in many unhealthy ways. I was addicted to romance novels and chick flicks. Pride and Prejudice (the 6 hour BBC version), which is a GOOD thing, became a stumbling block for me. I was constrained by what this guy or that guy thought of me to the point it affected how I dressed, where I went, how I went, and with whom I went. It was a sinful idolatry – so controlled by a fear of being perceived negatively or hope of being perceived positively by some guy of my dreams that I wouldn't or couldn't give myself wholly to my convictions of what God had for me. Something as simple as kindness to a bullied classmate became an issue if I thought it would embarrass me with a guy in whom I was interested. I hope most single women don't struggle with it as intensely as I did, but maybe you do.

However, I think that many who knew me during those years mostly did not have that impression of me. I still had character. I did reach out. And occasionally, I'd stubbornly do exactly what I thought God had for me without regard for others' approval. But that unhealthy, out of proportion desire was still there – not the God-given desire reflected in perfection when He said that, sure enough, it's not good to be alone, but the unhealthy desire that obsesses over a man and tempts us toward the very men we KNOW are going to be bad for us.

What is the answer for the single woman? Frankly, the same answer for the married woman—put on and be like Christ. Now, I do not diminish the difference in the experience of this desire if you are single verses married. I've written multiple times that a single woman should not feel guilt for the struggle with loneliness or longing. In many way, it IS harder to navigate this all as a single. Most women I know, married or single, well understand the longing and loneliness that comes with long term singleness. Christ in you does not mean you don't long for relationship. In fact, for some women, the more they know and love Christ, the more they may long for godly relationship. And that longing is not unhealthy! It's OK to mourn the loss, and it's OK to long for more. 

On the flip side, if you are in Christ, it's not rocket science to figure out when it stops being healthy, God-given longing and when it becomes unhealthy obsession—an idolatrous longing. Not a longing submitted to Christ but a longing that in ways takes the place of Christ. If you wonder if you are there in your inner thought processes about men or your outward actions toward men, I believe prayer with God and study of His Word are key. Ask Him, read His Word, and listen for the still small voice of the Holy Spirit to convict and encourage you. If asking Him seems weird and you'd rather go watch Pride and Prejudice or Emma (or read a romance novel), you have your answer.

I'll end with the similar encouragement from the first article. The answer to the curse is not self-reliance. It’s God reliance. THAT's the difference. Single woman, you have to be independent of people at some level, right? You may have community at church and family living near you. But ultimately, there's no one to turn on the lights inside when you arrive home after dark. In every way that you can foster godly community, I encourage you to put off independence and be available for relationship. Yet, there's no way around the need to endure some measure of physical, earthly independence. Just guard yourself from independence from God. Be the silly woman that neighbors think talks to herself when she walks in the house alone after dark. Except you know it's not silly and that it's God, not yourself, you're talking to. Stand strong during the day in your identity in Christ, and tuck yourself at night under the wing of the Almighty. It's the same answer for the curse, married or single. Whether you're pouring our your longings for intimacy with your husband or pouring our your longings for a husband with whom to be intimate, Christ alone remains the one who can meet you in that longing and redirect it to the Source that will not run dry.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

An Alternative to Stereotypical Feminism

As I continue to explore the implications of a historic understanding of Genesis 3:16, I want to review again the ramifications it has for the church's perception of feminism, especially among those who identify as complementarians. In review, God created the woman in His image, to reflect in particular His example as a strong helper. For more on how the woman’s creation to be a helper reflects God, see this post. Furthermore, God charged the woman to be fruitful – all while in perfect communion with Him. The curse on her after the fall reflects a perversion of each of these things. In perfection, she was to be fruitful. But after the fall, childbirth (and childrearing) is fraught with pain and suffering. In perfection, she was created to be a helper to her husband. After the fall, she becomes the needy one, clamoring for something from the man that only God was supposed to provide her. In perfection, Adam was created first, and we know from NT commentary on the order of creation that this reflected his call to leadership – hand in hand guidance and direction. But after the fall, instead of offering loving guidance, the man oppressively rules.

This is why feminism is attractive to so many. In my humble opinion, feminism is a learned coping mechanism for dealing with the curse. The formal definition of feminism is simply the movement for social, political, and economic equality between women and men. If you’ve bought into the Bill of Rights at any level, you can probably embrace that general idea. But feminists are perceived by non-feminists as seeking more than equality – they are perceived as seeking domination. Note: I'm mostly using the term feminist in a stereotypical fashion, and frankly, I know many humble godly women who have "feminist" views that don't fit this stereotype. The term is imperfect and imprecisely defined. Nevertheless, I think that the following discussion fits a strong portion of women who identify as feminists--women who are neither seeking dominance over men or simple equality with men.  In my opinion, what these women long for is INDEPENDENCE.
Independence – freedom from the control, influence, support, aid, or the like, of others.
My suspicion is that most strong feminist women were at some point likely seriously wounded (abandoned, abused, used) by a man they trusted somewhere along the way (father, brother, teacher, pastor).  For such a woman, feminism isn’t her living out the curse – feminism is her response to the curse. If you meet a woman who is strongly advocating her personal independence from men, I recommend that you don’t challenge her on her views or engage with her in debate (at least not if you actually love and care about her). I recommend asking her about her earlier experiences with men. Who hurt her? Who abandoned her? She may easily admit that her pursuit of financial, spiritual, and emotional independence is a result of some guy seriously hurting her (or hurting her mother). Or maybe it's simply a result of the universal abandonment of her by the men in her life.  Her dad, her boss, a former boyfriend, husband, or pastor--someone hurt her or abandoned her and exposed to her a weakness in her that she hated. Feminism is her coping mechanism.

Why is feminism attractive? Because weakness in women IS a problem. Paul affirms this in 2 Timothy 3:6. Scripture never calls women to weakness. Weak women attract abusers. And a feminist’s hatred of weakness in herself and others is not her problem! The problem is when feminism points to the wrong answer to weakness. Independence from others and sole reliance on ourselves is not the long term answer to abandonment or oppressive rule by men. It's simply a coping mechanism.

As Christian women, do we have anything better than the coping mechanism of insulating ourselves from a need for men by cultivating self-reliance at every level? In Christ, we certainly do! It’s counter cultural and maybe doesn’t seem insulating at all. You could argue it actually makes you more vulnerable. But there is strength to be had in Christ that allows you to remain in a place of vulnerability—to remain open to those who have the power to hurt you because you have embraced your role in their lives. You stay vulnerable because God has called you to help them. You lay down self-protective manipulation and endure uncomfortable, faith testing situations because, simply put, you are called to be like Christ.

How do we do this? Why do we do this? In Ephesians 1-3, Paul peels back the multiple layers of all Christ has accomplished for us on the cross. The gospel is both simple and deep. You can sum it up simply (while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us). But there is also great benefit to unpacking the depth of the gospel –what Paul calls our spiritual blessings in Christ which he details in Ephesians 1.

Paul tells of the Spirit in us who is God’s deposit that assures us God will not default on His promise of these spiritual blessings to His children. He tells us we have the same power transforming us that raised Christ from the dead. And though we were dead in our sins and by our very nature deserving of God’s wrath, in Christ we are now God’s adopted children with the full rights of sons and daughters in His household. We are fully reconciled with God and can boldly enter His presence to find help for everything we need. 

Paul is clear in Ephesians on the solution to the curse. In Christ, we are finally equipped to deal with the effects of the fall. We are equipped to apply the ultimate weapon against the depravity in others – gospel grace. And that same grace also equips us against the depravity within ourselves. The Spirit within us works outwardly what He is doing inwardly. We can become holy because He is making us holy. We can work out our salvation with fear and trembling because God is working in us to give us the desire and ability to do His will.

Paul then begins Ephesians 5 with the exhortation to be imitators of God.  He calls us back through Christ to what God created in perfection when He made us His image bearers.  In particular, all of us are called to love sacrificially like Christ (5:1). And all of us, male and female, are called to serve one another out of reverence for Christ (5:21). After setting up this foundation, then and only then can we hear the classic instructions to husbands and wives.

What does marriage look like between believers who are IN Christ and being conformed to the image of God? Though all of us are called to love, the husband is called to give a particular example of sacrificial love in marriage. And just as all of us are called to serve one another, the wife is called to give a particular example of submission in her home. The husband in Christ stops either lording his authority over his wife or disengaging altogether. The wife stops being so needy OF him that she can’t be a help TO him.

The answer to the curse is not self-reliance. It’s God reliance. It’s not self-protection. It’s tucking ourselves under the wing of the Almighty. And it’s not staying engaged just to be run over.   It’s standing strong in our identity in Christ and helping our husband using God’s example as our strong helper as our guide. The answer to the need presented in the curse of Genesis 3:16 and well articulated by feminist movement is to put on the image of God. It is enough that the servant be as her master. “Be like Christ” is the sum and substance to the answer of the curse for women.

* I have inadequately addressed the single woman who feels she must learn independence simply because God hasn't brought her a spouse.  That's a long subject, and if there's interest, I'll post something else in the coming weeks.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Eisegesis in Esther

Exegesis is reading “out of” a text the meaning intended by the author. It is the preferred method of dealing with Scripture among the theologians and pastors/teachers I respect. It takes into account the context of a passage, the author's intent, and other Scripture that reflects on the passage at hand. It is an imperfect science, and I would never suggest that any two esteemed theologians would “exegete” the same text of Scripture and always reach the same conclusions. However, I can pretty much guarantee that even fewer preachers “eisegete” the same text and reach the same conclusion, because eisegesis is when a pastor/teacher projects onto a text his/her own presuppositions. A clear indication of eisegesis is when a pastor/teacher uses something that is not in the text or even in the whole of Scripture as a foundational presupposition for their message on a text. Pastors who do this, in my experience, have their own agenda they want to present to their audience and often choose a text or book of the Bible that they can manipulate to further this agenda. I have a low view of eisegesis obviously. In fact, it's my all-time biggest spiritual pet peeve. 

From time to time, I hear of eisegesis concerning the Book of Esther – pastors teaching from Esther not with Scripture as their foundation but their own presuppositions projected onto it. I hear it from other passages as well, but it gets my attention when it is in Esther because Esther has a story that I particularly care about as a woman. I want to see the story of Esther stewarded well primarily because it's a beautiful account of God's sovereign hand at work in ugly circumstances! Though God is not mentioned in the book, He gives us a glimpse of what His sovereignty looks like in a story with heroes who never actually speak His name. So much of our daily lives involve such crises. We ask, “Where is God in this?!” Esther reminds us that He's there, and He's in control, even when no one around you mentions His name.

I also care about the correct handling of the book of Esther because Esther was a sexually subjugated woman in unfair circumstances. Over the years, much eisegesis on the story of Esther (and the story of Ruth) has sprung from pastors with a bad understanding of women's issues overall and the history of sexual subjugation in particular. I'm sensitive to how such stories are handled as I watch many of my sisters in Christ struggle with sexual histories which include abuse and subjugation. Esther's story is one we must steward well.

There are two bad pieces of eisegesis concerning Esther that I have heard. One uses Esther to teach women about Biblical submission to their husbands. I confronted that view here. The other projects onto Esther a sexually promiscuous history. That one disturbs me most of all because a straightforward reading of Scripture presents a very clear picture of a young virginal Jewish woman, not unlike Mary the mother of Jesus, who is funneled to the king simply because she is beautiful. Such eisegesis reveals an ugly assumption about beautiful women – that they universally, even the virginal ones of good ancestry, want to tempt men. That they AIM to tempt men. That they choose their dress deliberately to provoke lust in men. This is not to say that some women do not do that very thing. Proverbs is clear that such women exist and wisely warns men away from them. But Esther is not that woman. If you do not hold the presupposition that beautiful women deliberately invite lust, Esther's situation seems clear from a straightforward reading of the text.
Esther 2 
2 After these things, when the anger of King Ahasuerus had abated, he remembered Vashti and what she had done and what had been decreed against her. 2 Then the king's young men who attended him said, “Let beautiful young virgins be sought out for the king. 3 And let the king appoint officers in all the provinces of his kingdom to gather all the beautiful young virgins to the harem in Susa the citadel, under custody of Hegai, the king's eunuch, who is in charge of the women. Let their cosmetics be given them. 4 And let the young woman who pleases the king be queen instead of Vashti.” This pleased the king, and he did so.
Fact 1: She was a virgin.

Fact 2: She was beautiful.

Fact 3: The king holding Israel captive sent officers to gather all beautiful virgins to his harem.

Fact 4: The king holding Israel captive chose Esther because she was most pleasing to him.

As you read through the story of Esther's time in the harem, there is no fact cited in Scripture that indicates Esther WANTED the king's attention or MANIPULATED circumstances to attract his favor. Maybe she did, but if we indicate that in our teaching, it is eisegesis plain and simple because the text itself does not say that. It doesn't even hint at that.   It does state plainly that she gained favor, but the entire underlying premise at every turn in the story is that our unnamed God is the one giving and removing favor of either Esther, Haman, or Mordecai.

My personal presuppositions lead me to believe that Esther was fearful, drug from her hometown against her will. I imagine her horror upon entering the harem. How very foreign such sexualization of women must have been to this young Jewish virgin. Yet, I admit that this view is likely some form of eisegesis on my part as well. I project onto Esther a mindset that is not stated in Scripture though it could possibly be inferred. And the mindset I project is based in my presuppositions – primarily that  the curse of Genesis 3 reveals that men will oppress women, and history has proven that truth over and over again. That at least is a presupposition based on Scripture.  The neat thing about Esther's story is that this young virginal woman, thrust into a lifestyle foreign and distasteful to her, still managed to honor her God, gain favor with people, and be used by Him to save her people.

If I've said it once, I've said it a thousand times—conservative, complementarian Christians need to get better at confronting poor teaching among their own on women in Scripture. When prominent complementarians use such eisegesis on a Biblical text involving the sexual subjugation of a woman and no other complementarian leader confronts them, the whole of teaching on submission in marriage, male eldership, and a woman's particular role in reflecting the image of God gets tainted. I strongly denounce the view that projects onto the average beautiful virgin some type of promiscuous deliberate seduction of men.  Google “what were you wearing when you were raped” for a sobering wake up call if you hold to such a mindset.   Such thinking is exactly what God is redeeming us FROM, and when Jesus' kingdom is fully realized, such foolishness will be rebuked once and for all.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Put On Your Own Air Mask First!

Every time I fly, I'm struck by the stewardess' instructions in the event of an emergency to put on my own air mask first before helping anyone else, including my children. I always at first feel selfish even considering it — like it's an instruction from selfish people to other selfish people to take care of themselves first. But, of course, it only takes a brief moment of logical thought for the truth to hit me – I won't be in any condition to help my children if I pass out myself. It's plain, simple logic.

I'm learning that this is valuable advice spiritually too. Put on your own air mask first! If you are a compassionate, caring woman, you must understand that your love and service to others will cause you to suffocate personally if you don't spiritually put on your air mask first. People have a God-sized need in their heart, and we often want to fill it. In our children, with our spouse, with our friends, with our family. You can't provide their oxygen, but you can help them with an air mask linked to the source Who can. And you can't provide them with the source until you've first provided for yourself.

For me, this simply means feeding myself first spiritually. I am by no means the standard by which to judge your own daily devotions. Believe me when I say I am the least of these in terms of consistent follow through with devotional plans or books. It took me three years to read my one year Bible. However, at some point, I figured out what worked for me, at least in this season with small children. I bought a cheap New Testament with Psalms in a version I'd never read before. I've loved, loved, loved reading the gospels with their slightly different wording. It's awakened me to things in Scripture that had become stale and common place in my head. I'm marking it up and making notes as I interact with it. It sits by my chair where I have my coffee in the morning and invites me in the morning to feast on it. If only I was consistent daily to read it! Nevertheless, I'm reading more consistently than I have in a long time. I let the boys get their own breakfast of poptarts. Gasp! I know, right?! Poptarts?! But I realized at some point I would never get my own life giving breath of air if I didn't put that priority up higher than the others over which I feel guilt (like feeding my children healthy, low sugar meals). I try to give them healthy food otherwise, but they get their own poptarts and watch whatever's on the morning kids TV channel because before anything else, I need the Word!

Of course there are women out there who get up an hour before their kids and have their Bible reading done and a healthy, organic breakfast prepared by the time the kids awake. And I'm not mocking that by mentioning it! But I'm not a morning person and I needed to eat from the Word, so I HAD to figure out what worked for me. And if it means poptarts and cartoons, then so be it. Of all the selfish things a woman, married or single, mom or not, may do during the day (and I do plenty), I've learned that stealing away and ignoring others for quiet time with the Lord in prayer and Bible study is not one of them. Put on your own air mask first.

P. S. Morning devotions are not a magic cure or everyone's personal preference. A totally different application may come to mind for you. This is just how I'm thinking about it personally.