I recently had a friend start to share about an incident in their church that happened last year. Feelings had been hurt. Deeply. Gaping wounds had not yet healed.
Before she got into the details of the situation, I told her I didn’t need to know. I really didn’t want to know. She understood and asked me to pray for healing for those who’ve been hurt.
It grieves me to hear stories of believers hurting one another. We all know how we should behave and treat others, but we don’t always practice what we teach and what we preach.
I got to thinking about all the times and ways in which we unknowingly hurt each other in the church and specifically in women’s ministry.
If we can shine a light on the things we unintentionally do that hurt others, we can keep ourselves from making that same mistake with someone else.
This list would make for a great Women’s Ministry Team discussion – just be sure to set firm rules that names are not shared, gossip is to be avoided, and fingers are not to be pointed.
You might be surprised to discover that your team is guilty of one (or more) of the following 10 things. Together you can create an action plan.
Or perhaps you just need to pray and ask God to reveal any area in which you have unknowingly hurt another.
10 Ways We Unknowingly Hurt the Women in our Church
1. We undervalue their efforts – Everyone wants to be appreciated.
2. We overvalue someone else’s efforts – diminishing theirs.
3. We don’t communicate in a timely manner. Strive for 24, but no more than 48 hours.
4. We assume. Whether it’s a level of spiritual maturity, Bible knowledge, room location, or event information, we think they already know.
5. We under communicate. Send reminders. Publicize your events everywhere and in every way you can.
6. We hold back. We don’t share our hurts, our wounds, our trials, our mistakes. Our women mistakenly think we are perfect and/or can’t relate.
7. We get caught up in the details and forget the person.
8. We overprice our events. Our retreats and conferences are so costly that they consistently leave out a segment of our church body.
9. We forget to stop, drop, and pray. We continually come into contact with women that need prayer RIGHT NOW. Grab a corner and close your eyes. Pray before hanging up the phone.
10. We shut them out – we close our Bible studies and don’t let them join in mid-session. They have to wait until the next sign-up for a mentor or a Secret sister.
Now I may be able to write up this list, but that does not mean I’m not guilty of 2 or 3 or 4 (or all) of them!
Please hear my heart on this. I am not trying to make any of us or anyone on your team feel less than. I do, however, think it’s important to reflect and assess how we’re doing and look for ways in which we can love the women God’s blessed us with better.
It may be that God has not highlighted anything for you in this post. But if He has, will you prayerfully respond to what He’s put a finger on?
Your turn to share: Did your toes get stepped on? Maybe one of these things has happened to you? Is there something you’d like to see yourself or your team do better?
You may also want to read:
Letting Go of Perfect
How can we keep cliques from harming our ministry?
How to Alienate Visitors