EDITOR’S NOTE: The first part of Kelly King’s article appeared recently on baptistmessenger.com.
6. Begin a thriving women’s ministry where mentoring and discipleship are focused. Titus 2 encourages older women to be a model of godliness for younger women in your church. Consider ways you are offering discipleship and mentoring relationships for women. Begin a women’s ministry where women of all ages can grow in their spiritual journey.
7. Include women on staff but value them by paying them fairly and offering the same benefits as men. I often see women serving in churches as volunteers, and many of them view their work as a stewardship issue of investing in the church. Even so, consistently ask yourself, “Am I valuing this position of leadership in the same way I would ask a man to lead in a similar way?” In other words, would you pay a man for similar work? If a woman doesn’t want to receive payment, compensate her in other ways with benefits, conference allowances and a bigger ministry budget.
8. Value them as sisters in Christ. Fear sometimes drives church leaders from including women on their staffs and in leadership. The women I know in ministry don’t have a hidden agenda. They just want to be seen as co-laborers who are passionate about the Great Commandment and the Great Commission. Treat them as such by acknowledging their contributions and encourage them in their calling.
9. Recruit from the pews. You have a gold mine of leaders sitting in your congregation. I’m the product of a minister who saw my gifts and asked me to lead. He gave me opportunities to serve in leadership and realized that God uses lay people who are willing to grow and serve. I saw that same leader, a student minister, develop many leaders, both men and women, during his tenure at our church. Some of those lay leaders now serve in full-time vocational ministry, as missionaries overseas and on church staff. He realized the importance of multiplying leaders by calling out those who were under his care. I, for one, am eternally grateful.
10. Offer leadership development opportunities for men and women—together. Are you a church leader who attends conferences? You’re objective is most likely to grow in knowledge, in relationships and how to be more effective in ministry. But, are you going to conferences alone? Do you take other staff members so together you get a bigger vision for the future? I’ve been the recipient of church leaders who included several staff members when they attended a conference or they have sent me to a specific conference for additional training. Those opportunities have been invaluable to my leadership development.
If you are looking for a way to help a woman learn how to be a better ministry leader, encourage them to attend state convention equipping events or the upcoming You Lead conference I coordinate through LifeWay Christian Resources. For more information about this event on Friday, Oct. 11, go to lifeway.com/youlead.
If you’re looking for an excellent resource on this topic, I suggest reading “Developing Female Leaders: Navigate the Minefields and Release the Potential of Women in Your Church” by Kadi Cole (Thomas Nelson, 2019). Cole provides excellent tips on maximizing the leadership gifts of women in the local church and how you can identify ways to help women flourish in their calling.