Leaning into leadership

By Kathy Ferguson Litton

Ministry wives have a great capacity for leadership. We all are uniquely empowered and gifted to lead. Yet we seldom discuss our role as leaders. I am borrowing the phrase “Lean In” from Sheryl Sandberg’s national best selling book of the same name. Yes, she writes from entirely different world view and certainly to a corporate culture — YET I think her language of “lean in” applies to us in our content with an eternal and Biblical worldview. Being leaders in a ministry context in an “industry” if you will with ETERNAL perspective doesn’t mean we should ignore or play down our leadership effect. In fact, quite the opposite is true. We should see our capacity as leaders as something we MUST steward well for the sake of the Kingdom of God. So we “lean in” not “away from” leadership. It is a stewardship issue. Being married to a ministry leader provides us an automatic platform of influence. Some of us embrace that idea and some of us don’t. Many, like myself, stepped into marriage and role as ministry wife at very young age (19) and I certainly wasn’t ready to wear role as influencer then. Leadership broken down to it’s simplest component is influence. It is normal for us to grow into and gain understanding of our potential to lead and influence. BUT, we do need to “lean in” to do that. leadership is influenceIn my travels with my role at NAMB I am always delighted and inspired when I hear all the ways women serve and lead.  We (YOU) are involved in enlisting teams, marketing and promotion, developing and overseeing websites, teaching, speaking, working with children’s choirs, adult choirs as well as leading worship. You lead in Upward Basketball, Awanas, childcare services and student ministry. You lead mission trips as well as develop strategies to missionally engage your community. You teach ESL as well as sign for deaf ministries. You take groups to serve in homeless shelters as well as involve others in ministries to those coming out of the sex trade industry. You develop ministries from the ground up at church plants like setting up a First Impression team as well as developing a church’s first ever small group ministry. You mentor younger women. And often pour into other ministry wives. I could go on and on . . . PLUS there is your leadership at the kitchen table with your own children, which by all means is the first and most important place we influence and lead. So. Let’s lean into leadership in the next few weeks at Flourish as we unpack this leadership discussion.

Upcoming Equipping Events

Speaking of leaning into leadership. How about considering an opportunity for training and development? We have four Flourish events coming right around the corner in spring of 2016. Please take note if you are near these locations:

Hattiesburg, MS — Saturday, February 27, 2016 — 9:00 AM to 2:30 PM

Click here for further info and registration.

Atlanta, GA — Saturday, March 5 — 8:45 AM to 3:00 PM

Click here for further info and registration.

Miami, FL — Saturday, March 19 — 8:45 AM to 3:00 PM

Click here for further info and registration.

San Diego, CA — Saturday April 19 — 8:45 AM – 3:00 PM

Click here for further info and registration.

Published February 1, 2016

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Kathy Ferguson Litton

Kathy lives in Mobile, Alabama, with her husband Ed, pastor of Redemption Church. Both lost former spouses in car accidents, and God uniquely gave them new love and life together in 2009. Kathy enjoyed 26 years of life and ministry alongside Rick Ferguson. She has three children and ten grandchildren. Presently she serves as Director of Planting Spouse Development.