Earlier this year a women’s ministry leader asked for book recommendations in our Facebook group for her summer women’s ministry intern and this book, Leading Women Who Wound, was mentioned several times.

This was not a book I had read yet and the comments sure peaked my interest! I reached out to Moody Publishers to see if they might be willing to send a copy for me to review and a copy for me to giveaway. They were quick to say yes!

I’m excited to share with you my thoughts on Leading Women Who Wound: Strategies for an Effective Ministry.

I don’t have a lot of books on my must-own list for women’s ministry, but this is definitely one of them!

Raise your hand if you’ve ever had to deal with conflict in ministry.

Yep, me too!

If we’re not in the midst of navigating a conflict, chances are there’s one coming and it’s best to be prepared beforehand. “A wise leader understands that Satan loves to use conflict to destroy ministry.”

Leading Women Who Wound provides practical strategies we can employ when working through conflict resolution.

We all wound one another from time to time. Refusing to become skilled at reconciliation will doom you to a lonely life of superficial relationships. And you will be ignoring a direct command of your Savior.

You’ll return time and again to the timeless, Biblical advice offered by authors Sue Edwards and Kelley Matthews.

As the authors know from personal experience, “Personal attacks, difficult people and conflict are all inevitable in ministry…But in most cases, we can turn potential altercations into an opportunity to glorify God.”

In this book you will:
  • Explore personality traits and issues that may set you or your team members up for problems.
  • Work on ways to toughen up, snuff out people pleasing, and practice peacemaking in your everyday lives and relationships.
  • Learn how to differentiate between a woman who is bringing helpful, constructive criticism from one who is out to harm us or our ministry.
  • Learn how to take steps to avert conflict before it strikes.

Questions at the end of each chapter allow groups to process and apply the principles in the book.

You’ll find the chapters are a quick read, packed with information and practical tips.

Chapter 1 – Expect Women Who Wound
Chapter 2 – Women’s Ways of Whacking
Chapter 3 – Prepare Personally for Women Who Wound
Chapter 4 – Spot Women Who Wound
Chapter 5 – Disarm Women Who Wound
Chapter 6 – Love Women Who Wound
Chapter 7 – Steps to Making Piece with a Sister
Chapter 8 – Prepare Your Team for Women Who Wound
Chapter 9 – The Male Minister’s Guide to Female Negotiation

It’s the personal stories of conflict gone-wrong that set this book apart. Both Sue and Kelley have been active in women’s ministry for many years and share true stories from the front lines of ministry.

They share in such a way that you feel them coming alongside you, encouraging and coaching you to love the very women who may wound you.

Most critics are normal, healthy people who are displeased or hurt and need attention. They need to know that you care about them and that you will listen to their ideas.

Leading Women Who Wound would be an excellent book to work through with your team this next year. Consider covering one chapter each month at your team meetings. Be sure to check out the Conflict Resolution Covenant for women’s ministry teams included in chapter 8.

Four things set this book on conflict resolution apart from others:

  1. The goal is always to glorify God.
  2. Advice is offered through the lens of the Gospel.
  3. The differences between how men and women handle conflict are discussed.
  4. In light of how men and women handle conflict differently, there is an entire chapter written to male pastors to help them navigate those differences and help women move toward reconciliation and healing.

While I hope and pray this book won’t be one you’ll have to repeatedly pull from your bookshelves and put into use – it is a book you’ll want easily accessible when conflict arises.

May God grant each one of us wisdom and humility when we encounter conflict.

Disclosure: I received two copies at no cost of Leading Women Who Wound; one to give away and one to review. All opinions expressed are 100% my own. 

You may also want to read:
8 Reasons to Develop a Strong Women’s Ministry Team
Women’s Ministry Binder Essentials
Gather and Glean: Binders
10 Tips for Resolving Conflict

One year ago: 11 Things I Wish I Had Known as a New Women’s Ministry Leader
Two years ago: A Fresh (and much needed) Perspective on Mentoring
Three years ago: 6 Questions Your Women Will Have about the First Day of Bible Study
Four years ago: The Best Women’s Ministry Theme Ever
Five years ago: How to Frustrate Your Women’s Ministry Team