By Dr. Denny Wayman, Lead Superintendent of the FMCSC.
At the 2017 Annual Conference in Southern California I presented the findings of an informal study I made asking Free Methodist Women Leaders what it is that women bring to the leadership position that is unique. These are my findings and presentation:
In Genesis we are told that the curse of the fall is such that women have been subjected to men (Gen. 3:16) – AND – it is the Gospel message that this subjugation will be so no more within the Kingdom of God (Matt. 20:25-26) This imperative given to us by our Lord involves both humble diligence toward our own personal prejudices and a consistent commitment toward our church systems such that our sisters are empowered and encouraged to fulfill their God-given purposes.
This year we decided as your superintendents to not divide into workshops as though some of us are interested in missions, and some in leadership, and some in multiethnic ministry, and some in empowering women. All of these five values we all share equally. They define us as Free Methodists!
It has been said that the 21st century is the century designed for the Methodist Message. Our commitment to relationships allows the postmodern world to be engaged in conversations that reach beneath the resistance to religion into direct relationships with God.
It has also been said that women are uniquely prepared to lead in such a movement. I agree. In my 41 years of ministry, I have worked closely with leaders at every level of our denomination. I have seen firsthand the thinking when only males are seated at the table. I have also experienced the transformation when women are present. The unique perspectives, sensitivities and collaborative abilities that women bring change everything. The joining of men and women in ministry is a fulfillment of God’s intention when He said of Adam that it is not good for him to be alone – and His solution was not another man, but the gift of Eve (Gen. 2:18).
So to discover what it is that women bring, I reached out to a sample of Free Methodist women leaders: CEOs, Vice Presidents, Therapists, Lawyers and of course Lead Pastors from all over the nation. 20 responded. I asked them a simple question: What do women bring to the leadership position that is unique? I was looking for what is often missing when only men lead. Not that all men lack these abilities, but in their experience, what do they as women bring to the table that is often missing?
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