1. Prioritize a strategy to pray for leaders.
Since Jesus taught us to pray for workers in the harvest, that should be a priority for all leaders. Always pray for sensitivity to the women around you. Pray God would bring servant leaders to the forefront, and then engage them in ministry.
2. Teach 1 Corinthians 12 and unpack the text thoroughly.
Since God has gifted each believer to serve, help women see how the whole body fits together to serve Christ. Helping women understand the biblical basis for all believers to serve the church encourages them to be personally involved.
3. Do a ruthless evaluation of your current methodology.
What do you currently do to get to know and involve women? Maybe it’s more haphazard than anything. Perhaps you need a process for helping women find their place as well as teaching them to say, “no” if it is not God’s directive in their lives. Serving out of His call is much more effective than performing a duty.
4. Use “disciple” rather than “volunteer” language.
Being Christ’s disciple means we are to do anything He asks us to do. It also means making life choices based on His eternal values.
5. Assume people rather than positions are the starting point.
I bet some of you have served in a position just because someone asked you to, or made you feel guilty enough not to say no. We have probably asked women to serve with the same motives. But when we get to know women first, then we can find where they can best use their gifts and interests. This is so much more effective than just filling positional boxes with bodies.
6. Require a membership class, and explain involvement expectations there.
If your church doesn’t have a new member class, create one for women that shows them next steps as a member, with one of those steps being serving in ministry. Help them understand that all believers are to grow and serve, and they are each needed to complete the whole picture of ministry.
7. Use a process to help members consider where they might serve.
8. Recruit face-to-face.
Nothing works as well as a one-on-one conversation to get to know women and find out what God has done and is doing in their lives. Then you can begin to pray for which opportunities best fit who they are and what God is calling them to do. Personal care goes a long way in helping women find places to serve.
9. Provide training for workers and let the church know you do.
Many of us have just asked people to serve and then assume they know what to do. I am so guilty of this. But those who serve want to know what is expected and they want to be equipped to do a good job. So plan to train leaders on an ongoing basis.
10. Honor obedience.
A word of appreciation to someone who has served, as well as an encouraging note to their family members about how a woman has served, goes a long way. If we never tell our leaders how much we appreciate them how will they know? Find ways to brag on those who have served well — not perfectly — but faithfully.
What else would you add? Share with us how you find women to serve in ministry.