This past weekend, I went to my first university conference with three female colleagues that I have admired for the past year and a half, but not had a ton of opportunity to work with. We enjoyed three days of good food and good conversation in beautiful Monterey.
I came home with much more than professional input related to spiritual formation on college campuses. I left with gratitude for the strength, leadership, and passion of my co-workers.
The conference was one-third women–a ratio I never experienced in seminary and usually don’t find in church circles, at least not church leadership circles.
With so few of us in the game, it’s critical that women support one another in all our various ministry roles.
So why is it that women compete against each other instead of walk alongside one another?
Why do so many strong, action oriented women I know all say that they struggled to make female friends through their lives?
What has gotten into our heads that we think the success of our female counterparts somehow blocks our own options, like we’re all part of a game of musical chairs?
Spending the weekend with these women reminded me of the words of Lynne Hybels,
“The best thing I ever did was tiptoe out of isolation and join the circle of women. We need to choose to believe we are all in this together. We need to accept and honor our own lives so we can accept and honor each other’s lives. When we do this, when we help one another, cheer one another on, call one another to our truest and highest selves, we become a powerful force for good–for God–in this world.” –Nice Girls Don’t Change the World