A Women’s Ministry Leadership Interview with Linda Lesniewski
We are continuing our interview series today with Linda Lesniewski , a long time friend who succeeded me at Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler, Texas, when God called me to LifeWay Christian Resources almost 20 years ago.
Linda Lesniewski is the women’s minister at Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler, Texas, where she has served for 20 years. Her responsibilities include discipleship, missions, and special events. She is the mother of four young adults and grandmother of six little girls. She is a contributor to Transformed Lives: Taking Women’s Ministry to the Next Level. She has authored A Little Book About Knowing a Big God for children, Women at the Cross, and Connecting Women: A Relational Guide for Leaders in Women’s Ministry.
Chris: Tell us how God led and prepared you to the place you serve?
Linda: I felt called to ministry as a teenager, but I was 45 when I discovered He’d fulfilled that calling by placing me in this leadership position. I realize that marriage, motherhood, and sometimes the workplace, had all been good preparation for understanding seasons of a woman’s life. These experiences helped me better understand other women’s challenges.
Chris: We all face tough ministry issues at times. What is your greatest challenge currently?
Linda: Staying on top of technology and equipping the younger generation of women.
Chris: I can understand that one for sure! It’s a constant learning curve for me too. Tell us how you balance full-time vocational ministry, home, and relationships.
Linda: It’s a constant challenge, especially now that I have six granddaughters living in the same town. The empty nester years were actually when I felt I had the most flexible free time. Fortunately, I have a husband who is also in ministry and is very supportive. I’ve learned to delegate responsibilities and set specific times I check email during evenings and days off.
Chris: Where are you seeing the greatest transformation in the lives of women?
Linda: Seeing women get “unstuck” and find “freedom” in areas of their lives that are holding them back. These freedoms are diverse, so offering a wide variety of healing opportunities is the key. Providing resources, counseling, topical studies, support groups, counseling. Building relationships so the women become comfortable with sharing their struggles is essential.
Chris: What is your No. 1 leadership tip you would share with other women in leadership?
Linda: Prayerfully persevere! It’s not unusual to get discouraged or to want to quit dealing with difficult people. Take the challenge to the Lord and ask Him to guide you through it. Seek wise counsel if needed. But persevere.
Chris: What do you wish you’d known when you first began leading women?
Linda: That there’s no cut and dried formula. Churches and women are all different. Change is a constant.
Chris: You have been in leadership a long time and have served the women of your church for a long time. You have continually made adjustments as you have navigated the changes over the years, while still holding strong on principles. What are your dreams for the future of ministry to and with women?
Linda: That young women will “gird up their loins” and engage culture with truth and godliness leading this next generation of believing women to face the challenges of their day. Chris: Thank you so much for sharing from your experience. How can we pray for you? Linda: For God’s guidance as I navigate this new season of life as I face retirement and evaluate how God wants to use me as a layperson.