You see, just like at Storymoja, women will probably be more in the congregation. Most of us will be sitting there, wanting to hear why our men are not like what Pastor Mbevi will be talking about, while others of us will be praying to get a man at all, or to raise a man like that. It's a terrible space to be in as a woman, and probably that's why the Storymoja session degenerated into a shouting match.
My feeling is that men should have this discussion among themselves, without us women there. We all know that men don't talk - really talk - with each other when they're together. They show off about how virile they are, but never talk about the cost, which is usually stealing from the public, breaking their wives' hearts while exploiting other women, and basically leaving a trail of pain in the lives of the women and children who love them. Or if the men are Christians, they'll just praise the Lord and say everything's ok. No struggles, no real issues, no accountability, no soul.
For many years, I used to care about how men treated me. And they treated me badly. But the “Finders Keepers II” series at Mavuno earlier this year taught me that my womanhood depends on my Creator, not on men. So now I am African, woman and free. Triumphs, scars and all.
And now what I want to hear from men is not how they will kiss better, show up at home after work, be good dads and be faithful – although that would be nice. Rather, I want to hear how men will be upright, human, and how they will make this society better. How they will hold each other accountable. How they will demand that the pigs in politics – who are mostly males (not men) – work at making our public life coherent so that every Kenyan, in any corner of Kenya, has the opportunity to be the best they can be. I want to hear them say that the details matter, and commit themselves to making systems better and not just make decisions without thinking of those who will implement them. I want to hear the men dream big, of a better society, efficient systems, people living in dignity, and stop settling for moving up the ladder in a dysfunctional and stagnant society. I want to hear men being historical, seeing themselves in the footsteps of our greats like Sankara, Malcolm, Nyerere and Mandela. I want men to affirm that manhood is not possessions or status, but their relationship with God, their confidence in themselves, their service to community, and their commitment to their families.
It would be nice to have kisses, flowers, a walk in the park, and a man who’s there for me. But I want more. I want revolution. After all, as my dear friend Muoki Mbunga says, love is the revolution.
So here’s to next Sunday. I hope the series will not disappoint.