I am not a you-go-girl type. I also don’t wear perfume.
I’d rather be busy in the kitchen making pie then eating that pie sitting in a women’s church group. That may be because all of my women’s ministries experiences have included standing in a group of you-go-girl type woman, being overcome by a hundred different brands of perfume and feeling really uncomfortable.
Is it just me or do most Church Women’s meetings have a tendency to be centered around topical, Esther-based, introspective, devotional, self-focused, motherhood/wife-directed, encouragement driven studies only.
Let me back up, before I offend every person in my gender.
I am not anti-woman or anti-women’s ministry. If you love going to Woman Of Faith Conferences and you even shout you-go-girl occasionally, and your favorite book is Breaking Free by Beth Moore…God bless you! None of those things are wrong. Even wearing too much perfume can be over-looked.
What I am writing about today is that most Women’s groups in the church seem to be built for a certain brand of woman. The focus is narrow and because of that, women are most certainly falling through the cracks. And the crack-falling women tend to be the ones who don’t fit in with the current topic being studied. Like the infertile ones. Or the single ones. The new-believer ladies or the young and slightly cynical ones (like me). We have no place. And some of us really want a place.
Yet there is one thing that could easily bring us all together. One thing that would allow us all to rub shoulders, stand side by side and learn and grow as a group. Surprise…that one thing is the Bible.
Unfortunately, it’s missing.
Why is this?
I am a happy complementarian woman. And I believe strongly in male sacrificial, Bible-based leadership in the home and church. I desire for my male lead pastor to exercise authority by opening the Word every Sunday morning for the edification of the church. I want him to teach and admonish us with the Word of God in that setting. It is the one thing that brings all us men and women misfits together.
It is a good thing.
So why are women so timid to do the same thing when we are in a group together? Why do we feel the need to rely on the author of a devotional book to do that for us? Why is it that topical series on things like motherhood or releasing your inner Esther or breaking free from the mundane or becoming a wife of prayer are more important than the simple study of Scripture.
I’m not saying those topic’s aren’t good, relevant or important. They are. It’s just that scripture handles all of them. I’m also not saying that we should never ever study a topic or Christian book together. What I am saying, however, is a Christian book should be studied along side scripture and a topical study should not be the pre-dominant practice.
Studying God’s Word together as women unites us from all walks of life, all personalities, and all age groups. It is the way it should be. With all our differences we really need each other.
Women, we need the Holy Word. We need it more than ever in the history of the church.
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. ~ Romans 12:2
There is a crisis of identity for women today. Our culture screams at us convoluted, confusing and contradictory messages about who we are and what our purpose is. We breathe in those messages every single day. We need help to discern what is good and pure. We need each other for support when the noise in our heads overcome us. We need the Word to fill and abide in us as we do life together.
I pray there will be a renewal in the church in regards to ministry to women. The focus must change, because the Bible isn’t just a man thing.
It’s for women too.