A printable PDF can be found at the end of this article.
If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen (1 Peter 4:11 NIV).
A pillar is an object used to support a structure. Saint Peter is often called a pillar of the church. He gives us great advice in the previous passage to help us define how we, too, can be pillars. In organizations such as the Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, “pillars” are members who are servant leaders and who set an example for others to follow. Strong groups need strong leaders, and strong leaders need strong members. Here are some ways to help build up the LWML group and support the work God has given it to do:
Be in the Word. God’s Word is our strength. Servants need to be nourished by the Word in order to be strong. Being in the Word as a group and as an individual will strengthen your bond as sisters in Christ.
Be in prayer as you plan. Don’t be too busy to do what is most important. Praying is a bit like blogging. With blogging, we pour our hearts out in our online entries. We then hope someone will read the entry, and we may look to see if anyone has offered feedback. With prayer, we don't need to wonder if anyone is listening; we know God always hears us. He offers direction and guidance in His Word to inspire us with ways to address our problems, and He delights when we share our joys with Him!
Connect. People forget 80 percent of what they hear, usually within hours of hearing it, but emotional context helps them remember. Find ways to connect personally with others. Ask questions and identify areas of common interest. Share stories to connect with other women.
Collaborate. Your sisters in Christ are an excellent support system. Ask for their opinions and listen to what they say. Incorporate their input into your decision making. Work on inclusion; resist exclusion.
Brainstorm new ideas. Discuss different ways you can serve the Lord with gladness in your congregation that doesn’t involve traditional activities such as serving food. Make a list of every idea and choose two to implement this year.
Put yourself out there. Go out of your way to greet a sister you haven't talked to in a while. Never ignore someone because you think she ignored you first; she probably never even noticed you were there because she was trying to remember if the oven has been turned off. Do something kind for a sister in Christ with no expectation of anything in return. Your positive, genuine efforts will have a lasting impact. And that's the way it starts — once you begin to reach out to others, they may try it too, because they see it's safe and enjoyable.
Do the right thing because it's the right thing to do. Demonstrate integrity and stand up to inappropriate comments or decisions. Often all it takes is one brave soul to ask a sensible question, “Do we all really believe this is the right thing to do … is this what God would have us do?” Then more people will feel strong enough to say that they, too, don't agree. That one brave soul can be anyone. With God’s help, it can be you.
Be Confident in God. He equips those He calls!
View printable PDF of this article, How to Be a “Pillar” in Your Group