Women are vital to the body of Christ. So, how do we celebrate and encourage them well? What will best help them as they balance family life and being in ministry?
As a pastor and a happily married man, I cannot imagine a pastor not wanting to celebrate and empower women considering all of the strength they bring to the church. We would be ashamed to know how many ministries would fail were it not for the rock-solid consistency of women. Yet after serving at my church for 19 years, I am watching how difficult it is for young women to navigate life in this day and age. They are being pulled in so many different directions by the lies and the voices coming through avenues like social media. There is a picture being painted of womanhood, even biblical womanhood, that does not honor the Lord. Sadly, these inaccuracies add up to so many women walking around discouraged and defeated because they feel they can never measure up.
That is why I wanted to sit down and have a conversation with author and pastor’s wife, Donna Gaines. She is one of the incredible women speaking at the Upstate Women’s Conference on January 29th, and she has a wealth of wisdom to share.
Here is a little of what Donna had to say when I asked her how we can encourage women in today’s world:
“We’ve got to take women back to the Word of God. Everything goes back to God’s Word.
We need women to know who they are in Christ. When we can find our identity in Jesus, knowing at every moment we are genuinely loved and eternally significant in Christ, then we’re able to love our family and serve our family out of the overflow without looking to them to meet a need they were never designed to meet.
I think that’s where so many women are floundering today. They’re looking to the world. They’re looking to materialism. They’re looking to their spouse, to their children, to where they live, to where their kids go to school to meet this innate need within them for significance when only Jesus Christ can do that. And when He meets that need, nothing else really matters.”
Truth be told, I don’t know a single woman who couldn’t use some extra encouragement in our world today. Will you share the podcast episode with the women in your life? You can find that here. I would also love for you to encourage them to join women from all over the Upstate for a power-packed evening of worship, fellowship, truth, and encouragement. You can get more information when you visit upstatewomensconference.com.
Donna Gaines is the wife of Dr. Steve Gaines, pastor of Bellevue Baptist Church in Cordova, TN and he formerly served as president of the Southern Baptist Convention from 2016 to 2018. Donna is a graduate of Union University (B.S.) and Texas Woman’s University, (M.Ed.).
She is a devoted student of God’s Word and has written and taught Bible Studies for over 37 years. She has taught many youth, college, and women’s groups. Donna is the author of four books, There’s Gotta Be More; Seated: Living from Our Position in Christ; Leaving Ordinary, Encounter God through Extraordinary Prayer and Choose Wisely, Live Fully.
Donna is founder of Arise2Read, a partnership of evangelical churches and businesses with local school districts to help break the generational poverty cycle, through evangelism and literacy.
She also volunteers coach 2nd grade students one hour a week and serves in after-school Bible clubs. Steve and Donna have been married for 42 years and have four adult children, and sixteen beautiful grandchildren!