Leading & Loving It
My friends at LeadingandLovingIt just launched their new site and I wanted to stop and give them a big shout out for what they are up to.
Developing women is such a passion of mine and I get really excited when I encounter other women who are passionate about this as well. Lori, Brandi and the rest of the team are drumming up some very cool things to invest in and encourage pastors’ wives and women in ministry.
They are even letting me partner with them to host some of their leadership virtual gatherings!!
If you are a woman in ministry, hop on over and check out what they are doing… and be sure to sign up for one of their upcoming virtual gatherings!!
What do you think is the most important resource that women in ministry need right now?
Yes! I'm very excited as well and plan on attending in April (must buy webcam…putting on my to do list)! I'm a pastor's wife and realize more and more every day how isolating that role can be. So just the chance to "network" with other women in the same boat as me is a huge resource in my book! I'm a VERY social and outgoing person that knows a lot of people and has a lot of facebook "friends", but I'm only REALLY close with less than a handful of ladies that I truly open up to and that know me deeply. I can't do that with church members for obvious reasons!!!! That is why I say that it can be very isolated so I'm thrilled about the opportunity to talk with other ladies that understand all of that which I believe is a valuable resource! It will be encouraging so I can see that "I'm not the only one" which is a syndrome we can sometimes get into easily.
Wow! Did Michele just read my mind or what??? That sounds exactly like me!!! My husband (Ron) actually forwarded me Jenni's blog so that I would not miss out on this and I'm so excited about it!!!
Hey Cheryl! So glad I could help connect you to this!
Thanks Jenni! And one of these days I'm going to make it to one of the "Cultivate Her" events…Almost made it in February!!! Hope to see you soon!! Keep up the awesome work!!! You are amazing!!!
Michele, so glad you get to participate in April. I think you'll love it!
Thanks Jenni! We love you!
So excited about your next upcoming Roundtable in April!
Love how God is using you to encourage other women in leadership.
Thank you Lori!
Ok, this is a long response to your question so I've had to split it up into several comment boxes… 🙂
I have learned that there are still many obstacles facing women in leadership in 21st century America. At times, I have found that being a woman in ministry has produced more challenges than I ever experienced as a leader outside of ministry. I am very confident in my calling now, however this was not always the case. I struggled for a long time with issues of self worth, confidence and not knowing who God was calling me to be. I am so thankful that God never let go of me. He continued to give me enough opportunities to keep my dreams alive and fueled my desire to serve him and lead people.
I believe that some of the challenges that women face in ministry result from a lack of adequate encouragement, support and development from the church, and from other women who are making it happen. I know it is a natural tendency to seek out people who are already developed and polished as well as people of notoriety who have acheived success in their field. However, we must remember that God is no respecter of persons and as leaders, it is our calling to raise up more leaders. We must encourage people who are already doing it well to join in leading and developing others. After all, it’s not leading if no one is following.
I often wonder if it is because women have to work so hard to be elevated to a place of leadership that we are afraid to help other women out of fear that they will take our place. Instead, we must recognize that any gift we have is indeed from God; and if he's gifted us as leaders, it is his desire to use us as such. It is essential that we understand that we all have a unique calling and different spheres of influence; if we would keep that in the forefront of our minds, perhaps we would not tolerate many of the petty things that threaten to take us down.
I imagine an environment where women (especially those with similar gifting) can get together, pray for and encourage each other, share our mistakes, challenges and pitfalls, and offer advice on overcoming obstacles whether real or perceived.
Finally, I feel it is essential that church leadership assume the responsibility of identifying and listening to women who believe they have a calling and are passionate about a life of ministry but may need some time to grow in their area of giftedness. I believe mentoring is a key factor in developing leaders as well as opportunities for both current leaders and future leaders to attend conferences and workshops to learn, to grow and to be inspired to continue pursuing their passion so that they can be excellent in what God has called them to do.
Great thoughts!! Love your heart and I agree with so many of your points. I'm proud of you for pursuing your passion and gifting!