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High Heeled Empowerment

The latest women’s shoe trend features five, six, and even seven-inched heels. According to an article in my morning paper, top designer Christian Louboutin has lauded the trend of super high heels as a sign of women “empowering themselves.”

I don’t get it. How is a woman wobbling down the boulevard with sore feet and a pained expression on her face a symbol of empowerment? Women can barely stand their ground, let alone walk in these new sky-scraping, ankle-breaking stilettos. Catwalk models have been doing spectacular face plants.

Louboutin calls the super stilettos “limo shoes” because women need a limo to get anywhere if they wear them. Hmm… doesn’t this sound vaguely reminiscent of the ancient trend of women being carted around in litters by male servants because they couldn’t walk on their tiny and tightly bound feet?

I stand at 5 foot 11and a half inches tall in my stocking feet. If I were to don a seven inch pair of heels, I would reach a staggering 6’7″! Even the thought leaves me feeling dizzy and gasping for air. Call me unenlightened, but quite frankly, even for short girls, I see seven inch pencil heeled stilettos as extremely skanky and silly. I am astounded that any man could, with a straight face, say that they “empower” women. But I’m even more astonished that any woman would suspect it true and “fall for” this trendy idea.

If skanky stilettos are the best “empowerment” the world has to offer women, I think I’ll pass.

Power is the ability to do things, by virtue of strength, skill, resources, or authorization. The Bible teaches that God is almighty and all power is derived from him and subject to him.

Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. 1 Chronicles 29:11-12 (ESV)

Modern shoe designers would like me to believe that I’m “empowered” as a woman by putting on a pair of high heels to look taller and sexier. But the Bible refutes this fallacy. True empowerment comes by bowing my knee to the source of true power. When I submit to the Lord, He empowers me with “divine power” to destroy spiritual strongholds, arguments, and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God. (2 Corinthians 10:4) His power helps me, strengthens me, preserves me, delivers me, and exalts me. His power in me accomplishes abundantly more than all I can ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20).

So sorry Mr. Louboutin, I don’t think I’ll be dropping any money on your stiletto brand of women’s empowerment anytime soon. When it comes to empowerment, the Lord has a much better, more beautiful, and lasting design.

Copyright 2009, Mary Kassian

About The Author

Mary Kassian

Mary Kassian, the founder of Girls Gone Wise, is an award winning author, internationally renowned speaker, and distinguished professor of Women's Studies at Southern Baptist Seminary.

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