I have heard variations of this question more than once, usually from guys who have very misogynous views. But this is IMO a worthy question: Why should men “man up” and women should not “woman up?” To quote one of the askers in his own words:
Men have tons of programs in the church to “Man up!” Either they are stupid or women are more moral, which one is it?
I answered him this way:
Your “man up” question is actually a good one. There are men’s programs in the church, and even more women’s programs1.
But men are asked to step up, and women asked to not usurp, to step down, to encourage men to lead. No, men are not stupider, nor are women more moral. The point is that people with a men-should-lead view see, when men and women are equally wise and equally involved in decision making, men who should step up and women who should step down.
They teach men they are falling short, because they expect men to have more leadership positions, more leadership qualities and more leadership responsibility. They also teach women they are falling short, but in other ways: Women are allegedly not good enough followers, not “affirming the leadership of men” well enough, not having the gifts to speak and lead in church. Being asked to “step up”, when you don’t have the gifts for the expected task, is another side of the coin of women asked to “step down” when they do have the gifts.
Feminists are not asking that much of men. Christian feminists ask men and women to work for God by their gifts, not their gender, to lead only where God calls them to.
We don’t ask men to man up. “Up” implies higher, and “man up” means that going higher is suitable for men, not women. Feminists don’t see a hierarchy whereby one gender should be higher.
1 Perhaps churches have more women’s ministries than men’s ministries because men with a teaching or leading gift can use it in many places and thus have many choices of what to do besides men’s ministry, while women with a leading or teaching gift can often hardly use it outside women’s ministry.