Lesson 4 of our “Life Lessons for Leaders” has huge implications for how well the ministry is supported and encouraged from the leadership of the church. You might be a paid staff member as you lead women, but most of you are volunteer lay leaders seeking to minister to and with women. Connecting well with your staff, which is probably predominately male, will be a huge asset as you seek to develop the ministry.
Hebrews 13:17 tells us to, “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch
over your souls as those who will give an account, so that they can do this with joy and
not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.” (HSCB)
Whether we agree 100% with our pastor or other staff leader you relate to, we have a responsibility to submit to their authority. It is not only an umbrella of authority they represent, they also provide an umbrella of protection as we serve the church. They also provide a “whole church” perspective that is important as we lead women. Otherwise it would be easy for us to focus just on our area of ministry and forget the big picture of ministry.
As women’s leaders, one of our jobs is to provide a female perspective to the male leadership. The women in our church, and these male leaders need that so that they will see what women need and will respond to regarding salvation, growth, and service. But “how” we do that will truly make a difference whether or not they hear us.
In Mixed Ministry, the authors (two women and a man) do a fabulous job of helping us know how to work together as very different sexes to effectively build the church. They share ideas on how to communicate with each other effectively, how to respect and support each other¸ and how to not feel threatened by each other. Great read for women’s leaders as well as men on staff.
In Women Reaching Women in the chapter on Beginning a Women’s Ministry I shared 11 tips for sharing your vision with the church staff:
1. Be specific in sharing goals and objective.
2. Contribute the female point of view in a respectful manner.
3. Be available to assist in other ministries of the church as needed.
4. Know and follow church policies.
5. Listen to the staff (even ASK their opinion and expectations).
6. Know what is expected in staff meetings if you attend.
7. Choose the right time to address church staff by making appointments.
8. Be specific and take a short list of items to discuss.
9. Submit calendars early for women’s groups and activities.
10. Include the pastor’s wife or other staff wives as advisors on your team if they are willing.
11. If whatever you desire to do hinders the church or Kingdom in any way, DON’T!
What a privilege to serve as women’s leaders in our church. Ask God how best to honor him as you walk along side the staff God has placed at your church.
Perhaps you can add your own ideas to this list. Please include them in the comments box on this post.
For more help read How to Improve Women’s Leadership and Church Staff Relationships (1/22/07)