Sunday, October 2, 2011

15 mistakes I made while working with men: Biblical reminders

Therefore, God’s chosen ones, holy and loved, put on heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, accepting one another and forgiving one another if anyone has a complaint against another. Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so also you must forgive. Above all, put on love—the perfect bond of unity. And let the peace of the Messiah, to which you were also called in one body, control your hearts. Be thankful. Let the message about the Messiah dwell richly among you, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, and singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him (Col 3:12-17).

            In every situation, we are to put on “heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience” as it says in Colossians 3:12. Sometimes we forget this when working with the opposite sex. We may feel like we are being left out intentionally in things that are going on and decisions that are being made. Maybe there is a decision and nobody asked us. Possibly our viewpoint is not included and we feel we are justified in how we respond. Whatever the scenario, we are to be loving, caring, patient, kind, and the like. We learn to respond and not to react to things that happen, especially in the office. These things seem to be basic yet the lack of these basic things can harm our ministry and our effectiveness. I have learned that everyone is not out to get me; in fact, if I feel that someone is, there is usually another whole side to the story. I have learned that it is not that the staff are not supportive of me or the ministry to women as much as sometimes they just don’t understand it or what the needs are. These become times that I need to educate them on the issues or the needs at hand. I don’t need to get upset or haughty or emotional, I just need to communicate to them in a way that they will understand it. Whatever I do, I need to do it in such a way as to glorify God. That can only be done when I begin by making sure that I am Spirit-filled on a daily basis. Not only the need but the demand for a daily quiet time is essential in ministry. Without it, we focus on everything we think we deserve instead of being humble and realizing that we deserve nothing. We must be servants of all just as Christ served us. Everyone has good and bad days and it is easier to keep this in perspective when we have taken time to being the day with God’s perspective and His plan for the day and for the ministry.
Excerpts from Women Leading Women: The Biblical Model for the Church, Chapter Six, Serving with Men, by Jaye Martin.