On any given Sunday, I see women all across the globe serving, ministering, and using their gifts to further the Kingdom and love Jesus’s bride well. From serving in the nursery, to teaching small groups, to opening the door with a smile, to leading in song, women have been and always will be a vital part of the Church and God’s Kingdom.
With evangelical churches often consisting of more than half of its members and volunteers being women, we see the fruit and faithfulness each and every week, and yet when it comes to the conversation about women in the Church it often gets hijacked with arguments around roles, office, and title, and in so doing we miss a bigger conversation around celebrating, equipping, and affirming the roles of women in our churches.
As a church leader, you have an incredible opportunity to affirm the gifts of women and utilize their gifts, but it can often be hard to know where to start among the constant needs and demands that you are having to juggle. Here are four quick ways to celebrate and utilize the women in your church.
1. Teach About Them
One of the most pivotal sermon series I have heard preached was at Christmas time in a series called “She Shouldn’t Be Here.” What was a common storyline for most church members became an opportunity for my pastor to open up the text and give value and dignity to the women in the redemptive story.
The way empathy was displayed in Ruth’s story and the courage and grit of Rahab helped to give both men and women a picture of how God uses women to bring about His purposes. Women of the Bible shouldn’t only be studied in the context of women’s events and Bible studies. Teaching and modeling God’s design for mutual mission and worth helps to set a culture of familial partnership alongside one another.
2. Invite Them To The Table
With more than half of our congregations being made up of women, part of knowing your flock is listening to their needs, current circumstances, and viewpoints. Depending on your staff structure and polity you may be limiting the influence of women into some of the most pivotal decisions for your congregation. Invite them into brainstorming sessions for sermon series or meet with them regularly to hear what issues and struggles they are facing.
Their feedback on cultural issues, parenting struggles, assimilation needs, and even aesthetics of a room are all things that women can speak into with different insights and viewpoints that make your end result stronger and more rounded to the church as a whole.
3. Equip Them
God has gifted all believers with spiritual gifts to edify the church and be a reflection of Himself in communities, schools, neighborhoods, and workplaces. This means that both men and women are equally on mission in their various contexts. Women in the church have been gifted with teaching, organizational, encouragement, and leadership gifts as well as many others.
How are you training and resourcing them to further develop those gifts? How are women being built up in their teaching gifts to then lead and teach from an orthodox view of Scripture? In what ways has the church invested in their development?
With our new Church Answers Women’s Initiatives and our new certificate in Women’s Discipleship from Church Answers University coming in August of 2022, we are hoping to help give tools and resources for you to pass on to the women in your church to help them grow and be better equipped. Something as simple as passing on this email, helping pay for their certification, or setting them up with a mentor is invaluable to them and to your church.
4. Utilize & Celebrate Them
The importance of women being both visible and approachable is a strategic and important step in communicating to your church that there are women available to seek out for counsel and help. Being sensitive to issues such as abuse, abortion, and other injustices and providing a safe avenue for women to receive trained and biblical direction toward healing not only helps to shepherd those in your care, but also communicates to all those watching that the church cares about injustice, restoration, and healing.
Women often lead out in compassion ministries and are able to organize, assimilate, and connect people. This is your community engagement, connections, and first impressions teams within your churches. How you recognize, utilize, and then champion women in various roles both from the platform to conversations with members inside your church helps to allow women to feel seen, valued, and empowered to be the disciples God has called them to be.
Jacki C. King is a respected and popular Bible teacher, conference speaker, and ministry leader. She has a passion for seeing women fall in love with Jesus and His Word while challenging them to be on mission in their homes, workplaces, and communities. This article first appeared on churchanswers.com on March 4.