Women’s Ministry is changing. We’ve eaten a lot of cupcakes in pursuit of getting it right; we’ve tried a lot of book studies in hopes of making it meaningful. An open letter to Women’s Ministry in 2011 stirred up a lot of feminine feelings and continues to be reposted. My friend Kathy recently responded with a great perspective on why cupcakes and theology don’t have to be mutually exclusive in ministry to, with, and for women.
I love Women’s Ministry. Women are some of the greatest underused potential in the Church today. I’ve enjoyed over a decade of ministry as a Women’s Ministry leader, with opportunities to mentor women’s leaders in various countries and sweet times of teaching teams to find the balance between the Bible and baking for believing women. It can be done. It must be done.
Last week I shared my burden for how pastors need prayer. Today I want to share one word to guide prayer for Women’s Ministry. Instead of just choosing from a menu of book studies, Bible studies, fun events, support groups, outreach opportunities, mentoring, and more, let’s get off the coffee and chocolate train for a minute and PRAY. Let’s STOP and PRAY for our Women’s Ministry.
If every woman in Women’s Ministry would commit to pray for it, Women’s Ministry would be more likely to strike the blessed balance for women of faith. From my years of participation and leadership, I believe there’s one word we need: INTIMACY.
“Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior.” (1 Timothy 2:1-3)
Intimacy with God –
You know cupcakes and centerpieces aren’t just fun, right? They ultimately lead us and others to God. We need Him. We need to know Him and His Word. We need to crave Him and depend on Him and rest in Him. A cupcake is a way to get women to God.
Pray for your leaders to keep this at the forefront of their own lives. We can’t lead people where we have not been. The heart of a ministry reflects the heart of a leader. May our leaders walk intimately with Jesus, loving His Word, knowing His Word, and drawing purpose from Him. Leaders who live intimately with God lead others to love Him too.
Intimacy with Each Other –
It’s never been so easy to spread WM information. It’s also never been so easy to spread intimacy with each other quite thin. Online intimacy and information does not take the place of real relationships. Today WM leaders are tempted to lean hard on technology. After all, it looks slick, like we’ve got a lot going on. And let’s face it, there are awesome cupcake graphics! But we need to know each other. We need to know and be known.
Only in intimate, real relationships can we implement Titus 2 in our lives. Only then can we see what’s behind Facebook profiles, speak into more than status updates and get involved in more than Go Fund Me campaigns. Pray for Women’s Ministry leaders to be intimately involved in friendships with women, so they can create a climate of authentically intimate relationships and lead others there. Leaders who relate intimately with others lead others to love others too.
Intimacy with the World –
You read that right. From my experience as a WM leader, if we don’t intentionally cultivate intimacy with lost people, we won’t have any. If we aren’t careful, we’ll end up with a schedule full of small group meetings, Bible studies, ministry service, church events, Christian books, inspirational blogs, and time at the church building. We’ll take the salt right out of the world. We will hoard the light meant to shine in the darkness.
Pray for your Women’s Ministry to see, know, and love the lost in everyday life. Pray for them to build bridges of blessing between your Women’s Ministry and the people and needs of the world outside your church doors. A Women’s Ministry that only happens inside the church building misses ministering to most of the women where God has your church. A healthy WM reaches OUT. How do you start? Why not take some cupcakes to your local police department, refugee center, or teacher’s lounge? Leaders who intentionally initiate intimacy with the world lead others to impact their world for Christ.
I love Women’s Ministry. It has the potential to change the world! So before we eat our next cupcake, let’s pray to have intimate leaders leading others to intimacy with God, with each other, and with the world.
I love working with leaders to grow their Women’s Ministry. If you would be interested in having me join you or your team for a time of evaluation, visioning, and planning together, contact me! We’ll start and end with prayer.