Encouragement

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Bounce Back After Defeat

Every leader faces failure, but it doesn’t have to be the end of your ministry.
Bounce Back After Defeat
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I used to believe that in ministry, no sacrifice is wasted—that our blood, sweat, and tears will always bear good fruit. When I started a new ministry, I envisioned ascending a ladder of faith, going higher and higher to reach the mountaintop. I figured if I put in the hard work, it would hold, and I could continue building on that foundation.

Imagine my shock when unforeseen ...

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You Are Needed

The church—the entire body of Christ—needs women leaders.
You Are Needed
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I remember our conversation like it was yesterday.

“Have you ever thought about being a pastor when you grow up?” Pastor Mylinda leaned over and asked, pointing to the people and the building around us. “I could see you doing what I do.”

I looked at her and gawked. Me? I wanted her to see something bigger, shinier, and perhaps a bit higher-paying for ...

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Live Your Calling: A 40-Day Devotional for Women Leaders

A brand-new resource designed especially for you
Live Your Calling: A 40-Day Devotional for Women Leaders
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If you like sneak peeks, we’ve got a big one for you. In the next few weeks, Gifted for Leadership is getting a modern update to better reflect our mission. I’ll post more about the specifics later, but in the meantime, you can get a first look by checking out our brand-new devotional. It includes our new name, logo, and colors, so you can get a peek at the exciting ...

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Female Insights into the Christmas Story

Women bring unique perspectives when they teach the Word of God.
Female Insights into the Christmas Story
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Shortly after I started my first job as a pastor, I was given the opportunity to be one of the first women in our church to preach in our Sunday services. To say I was intimidated by the thought of preaching in front of the entire congregation would be an understatement—I was terrified.

After preaching that first fateful Sunday morning, I was pleasantly surprised when ...

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Overcoming Gender Bias

Melinda Gates on how to be a successful woman leader
Overcoming Gender Bias
Image: Courtesy of the Gates Foundation

I did something the other day that I immediately regretted. Worse, it was in front of my 2-year-old daughter. I had come down with a nasty head cold that turned into a nasty chest cold, and my daughter, who already shows an incredible amount of empathy, looked at me with concerned eyes as I coughed yet again. I didn’t want her to be worried, so I did what any good parent ...

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6 Leadership Lessons I've Learned from Millennials

As I'm learning from Millennials, I'm finding hope for the future.
6 Leadership Lessons I've Learned from Millennials
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We talk a lot about Millennials. It often involves a lot of eye-rolling.

The stereotype is nicely summed up by the title of a 2013 Time Magazine article: “The Me Me Me Generation.” This thought is not limited to secular circles, either. Earlier this year, Watermark Church created a song (which then went viral online) called “Gotta Love Millennials.” ...

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An Open Letter to Young Women Leaders

The glory of God is man—and woman—fully alive.
An Open Letter to Young Women Leaders
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My dear friend,

It is nothing short of joyous to see you in action—loving God and loving people. I don’t question that you are right where you’re supposed to be, for you are more than leaning into the calling placed on your life. Do you see what I see in you? Do you believe in what Christ wants to do through you?

Here’s what I know, you have the Three ...

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Don't Be That Woman

Culture wants to caricaturize women leaders. But God sees us in a different light.
Don't Be That Woman
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Recently a man told me I should stop interfering.

I didn’t take it well.

Soon after that interaction, I came across a collection of anti-suffragette postcards featured on The Huffington Post. One postcard shows a room full of buck-toothed, bug-eyed women with the text: “At the suffragette meetings you can hear some plain things—and see them too!” The ...

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Trusting God When the Future Is Unknown

Will we enter God’s Promised Land for us in full faith?
Trusting God When the Future Is Unknown
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Editor’s Note: National Hispanic Heritage Month begins today, running through October 15. To kick off the month, we’re featuring a gifted, wise, and talented Hispanic woman leader. To read more from Bianca Juárez Olthoff, click here.

The Israelite spies stood at the edge of their promise. They could see the journey ahead of them. They were chosen to inherit ...

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I Don’t Fit the Senior Pastor Mold

But I’m leading in the way God has gifted me.
I Don’t Fit the Senior Pastor Mold
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I felt a lump in my throat as I looked out across the sanctuary of the 1,900 member congregation—the church where I had been senior pastor for nine weeks. It was the same sort of lump I had when my son, Caleb Daniel Leach, was placed into my arms for the very first time.

As I held Caleb, tears streamed down my face and onto his precious cheeks. I was madly in love. He ...

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