10 things single staff women should know
Awkward lunches, tearful meetings, and hundreds of burnt batches of cookies are all things that women on staff with a college ministry know well.
Over the last few years, I have learned ten great principles that are worth passing along:
1. Try hard and fail hard.
My first year on staff my director challenged me to fail five times in my personal ministry. This frees you up to be creative and try new things without fear of failing because failing is the goal.
Remember, in ministry the only true fail is not to show up or not trying anything at all!
2. Be a family with your staff team.
You will always have friends from college and back home, but the reality is that no one understands your lifestyle and your work the way that your staff team does, so just embrace it. Be open with them and enjoy time spent with your team.
3. Think about support every now and then.
It’s easy to finish raising support and never look back once you get on campus.
Do yourself a favor and try to have a couple support appointments on breaks, and definitely spend the time and money to keep your supporters updated.
4. Don’t compete with the staff men (and other women).
Often times, when we look to others on our staff team we can feel like a failure (or super accomplished).
As a staff woman, it’s important to remember that men have a different capacity than us. Ministry looks different for men and women, and that’s okay!
Appreciate the different gifting that God has given everyone on staff. Each person is needed on your team!
5. You might crush on one of your staff partners.
Heck, you might crush on all your staff partners.
You’re normal. You are not the first woman the phenomenon of the multi-crush has happened to.
Most of the men you’re working with have great qualities that we can admire and be very thankful that God has given us as friends. Just be careful not to read too much into the men being good brothers.
A lot of us have broken relationships with men so let God use the godly men we work with to help redeem some of those views.
6. Be okay with the emotions you experience.
Being women in professional ministry, we’re bound to experience a wide array of emotions.
Don’t try to push them away. That will just cause an emotional explosion later on. Deal with your emotions as they come. I promise you’re not alone in anything you feel, no matter how ridiculous it may seem.
7. Be real with your struggles.
It’s tempting to buy into the lie, “I can’t be struggling with this, I’m in ministry.”
Unconfessed sin is the quickest way to kill your intimacy with God and for your personal ministry to struggle.
Satan would love to use your pride to kill your joy and bring distance in your relationship with Christ.
8. Remember that God is good to you.
When disciples and friends start getting married and having babies, it’s easy to feel like your life is not progressing because you’re still hanging out on the college campus.
In those moments, remember that Jesus died for you. Remember that Calvary happened and because it did, it would be impossible for God to be any less good to you than He was in that moment!
9. Campus ministry is your job, not your life.
While a majority of our time is spent on campus, it’s important to continue to have hobbies and spend time with friends.
If you can’t seem to find the time to get away from campus, you might need to take a step back and remind yourself that you’re not God’s gift to the college campus.
10. Your number one job responsibility is to love God.
As much as you help others grow in their faith, the most important part of your job description is to walk intimately with Jesus. With that being said, be sure that spending time with Jesus is a non-negotiable part of your day!
Being a single staff woman with a college ministry can have its unique challenges, but it’s helpful to keep these ten principles in mind.
It’s also helpful for me to remember the promise at the end of the Great Commission: “Surely, I will be with you always to the end of the age.”
The greatest thing about stepping out in faith and doing ministry is not that many others will come to know Jesus. That’s obviously great, but the best part of all this is that we get to know Jesus better through stepping out in faith and having a personal ministry.