Elizabeth Parker, M.Div., WRC Leadership Committee Chair
Feeling inadequate? Me too!
Truthfully, when our fearless leader, Sharon Beekman, asked me to chair the leadership committee of the Women’s Resource Council, I hope I didn’t actually laugh out loud. See, it was funny to me because I’ve been in various leadership positions over the years but none were particularly daunting until I was hired to be the Women in Ministry Director at First Presbyterian in Baton Rouge. I came on staff when I was 26 years old and straight out of seminary. I immediately felt the challenge of being inexperienced at managing a leadership team, teaching, preparing Bible studies, taking concepts in my head and making them happen for real in the church, and so much more. Seminary is wonderful and is necessary for my calling at First Presbyterian – but no seminary can fully prepare you or me for leadership.
I tell you these things about myself because maybe some of you can relate. You might feel insufficient or inadequate to lead because you have never seen yourself as a leader before. Maybe some of you greatly desire to begin a women’s ministry in your church but you have no idea how to lead that effort. Maybe some of you currently have a women’s ministry and know that changes need to be made, but you have no clue where to start.
Well, it is our privilege as the leadership committee to help you!
First, let me remind you of Exodus 18:21:
“Furthermore, you shall select out of all the people able men who fear God,
men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain; and you shall place these over them as leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens.”
So how can you be a good leader, biblically speaking?
FEAR GOD! Make your ways his ways. Love what God loves and hate what God hates. This is what it takes to be a good leader. So if you love the Lord; if you are praying to be sanctified and become more like Christ each day, then you are already a leader. You are leading by example when you keep your focus where it ought to be- on the Lord.
Along with your continued sanctification you might need some practical help. That is where we come in! We want to be a helpful resource for you as you and other women in your church begin the process of leadership training. The leadership committee wants to prove to you that leadership skills can be learned and developed and that you don’t need to be intimidated to step up to the plate. Through books, articles, and online videos, our goal is to give you- and other women in leadership roles in your church- what you need to feel confident and equipped to lead in any capacity in which God calls you.
As the website has just gotten started, we will be continually, even if slowly, adding resources online. Visit us at http://www.epc.org/Ministries/The Well Women’s Resources. I hope this has been an encouragement for you, even today, as you seek God’s guidance and direction. So keep checking back with us and get excited about the work God is doing in your church!
Elizabeth Parker has been the Women’s Ministry Director at First Presbyterian Church in Baton Rouge for about two and a half years. She began her work in Baton Rouge just 10 days after completing her M.Div. at Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, NC. Previously, she served as an intern for Reformed University Fellowship. Elizabeth loves her job, and can’t say enough about how much she loves her church. Feel free to contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.