Gender dysphoria speaks to the dissonance that a person might feel with their biological gender. A woman might feel that she is really a man trapped in a woman’s body. A man who perceives himself as a woman might even pursue some type of gender reassignment to alter his anatomy.
We should not be surprised that such confusion exists. We live in a world that has been permeated by sin. Some people have experienced abuse or certain experiences that have contributed to gender confusion. For some there are issues of brain chemistry and hormone levels that are contributing factors. And in some rare but extreme cases, a person’s biological/genetic gender is not completely clear. We grieve over the effects of sin in the world and should respond compassionately to assist those who are conflicted regarding their gender.
At the same time, it is important to remember that God has purposely designed us distinctly as male and female. There is an attempt in our day to blur the distinctions between men and women. Men are encouraged to be more feminine and women are encouraged to be more masculine. This has contributed to a pervasive cultural confusion over what it is to be male or female. As the church, we should be intent on celebrating and recovering God’s beautiful design for gender.
We must also remember that gender is not simply a matter of how we feel. It is not something we choose. Our gender is determined by biology and genetics. Gender is more than body parts – but it is not less. God has created us with both body and soul. We cannot say that our “true self” is somehow in contradiction with our body. Our body is an integral part of who we are. I might want to be 20 years old. I might want to be 6’ 6” tall. I might want to be a turtle. But these things simply do not correspond with the objective reality of who I am. May we graciously embrace God’s beautiful design!
Photo credit: https://pixabay.com/en/bokeh-district-circle-of-confusion-1162464/