Women’s ministry is seen by many churches as a nice thing to do, it normally involves afternoon tea and craft events. Whilst men’s ministry involves curry nights and watching the football or rugby. To unpack all of that is a whole different blog post in itself. But here I want to stress the importance of women’s ministry.
As I’ve been trained and am involved in training across Scotland, there is an obvious deficiency in the training of women to be equipped for local church ministry. I’ll be honest, I am a complementation, meaning that I believe the Bible teaches that there are certain roles and offices in the church that are reserved for men. However, the list of what women can do it far greater than that of what I see Scripture saying they cannot. Here is a post that I wrote about that very topic not too long ago.
Churches place an emphasis on training preachers, elders and pastors, and I understand why that it. But often that training is done at the detriment of training and equipping godly women to serve the church. Realistically, you probably have more female member than you do male members, I haven’t checked figures or statistics on that but generally that’s true.
I say this not as a person who has nailed it, or who has got it all sorted, but I’m saying this as a church leaders who sees the problem and knows that there are so many women who have a love for the Lord and for His people. Therefore, those women should be encouraged to serve and use their gifts. We should be building up Titus 2 women; women who rightly handle the Word of God and who teach and equip other women to serve the Lord.
Here are just three things (there are more!) that I would love to see women equipped to do in every church. If you’re a church leaders, please consider taking on a paid women’s worker who can give their time to serving the church, to equipping women and to serving the Lord with their gifts!
I’m a firm believer in the importance of discipleship, I’m also a firm believer that real discipleship should only happen between people of the same sex. That doesn’t mean that men can’t be involved in the discipleship of women, but the reality is that women can disciple each other much better than any man could.
Discipleship doesn’t always mean sitting in a coffee shop with Bible’s open for a neat hour with a few minutes of friendly chat. Real discipleship means living life together. We fall into the temptation of thinking that we need to present a ‘social media / air brushed Christianity’, but the best way to help another believer grow is to invite them into the mess of your own life.
Discipleship will mean reading Scripture with people and it will mean showing them how the Word should change their lives, but it also means showing it to them practically. Jump in the car with people, let them see how you as a Christian deal with traffic, running errands, how you deal with the stress of a busy home and so on. Invite people into your life, let them see the laughter and the tears, let them see the mountain tops and the valleys and lift their eyes to the Awesome Saviour that you serve!
There are so many gifted women sitting in the church who have a deep desire to learn and hunger for God’s Word. Why on earth would we stop them from feasting on Scripture? If we want older women (not necessarily years but maturity) to teach younger women, then we need to enable them and train hem to rightly divide and explain God’s Word.
I’m a firm believer in training people to understand God’s Word, generally the focus of training is largely on preachers and pastors, but if we want women to teach women then they too need to be trained. In Scotland at the moment there are some tremendous people training women to go into a serve the local church, to disciple women and to raise up women’s workers. If we neglect to train women and see them train others, we are stopping faithful people serving God in the way He gifted them to.
3. Pastoral Care
Pastoral care is so important, those moments when you sit and weep with someone as they mourn will be the thing that they remember. Women are far better equipped to care for other women, identify with and help women than men are. Again, that doesn’t mean that men are void of responsibility when it comes to pastorally caring for women, but I think it’s important to let women care for women well.
I’ve had the privilege of working in churches with women on staff and it has been a joy to see them involved in all three of these things. I would love to see the day when in Scotland every church has a paid member of staff who is responsible for equipping and training women to serve the Lord as He has gifted them.
Please equip and enable women to serve and consider employing a women’s worker in your church and please train up Titus 2 women to disciple, teach and care for other women.