Is the church in danger of losing its next generation of women leaders?
A couple of years ago a leadership mentor challenged me with a tough statement. She said, “Jenni, how you steward your influence as a leader will directly impact the rest of the women in your church.” That statement has haunted me ever since.
I’m ashamed to admit that up until that conversation, my leadership had been very me-centric. I was worried about me instead of being intentional about developing other leaders, especially the young women leaders around me. In fact, I wasn’t even sure who the young women leaders were in our church. There were hundreds of 20- to 30-something women coming in and out of our doors each week, but I was seeing very few of them lead.
I knew it wasn’t because they didn’t have the potential. Statistics tell us that there are more single women in the U.S. than married, and those who do marry wait until age 30, on average, to do so. Women also are more educated than ever before.
I also learned by way of conversations and observations that many of the single women in our church were serving at local non-profits and other organizations throughout our city. They want to serve; they have time to serve. But their volunteer and leadership horsepower wasn’t being put to use in the church. Why?