Why is that women often have a hard time following the call of Jesus?
I have often read the accounts in the gospel when Jesus called the disciples to become followers. In these gospel accounts Jesus called the disciples to leave their jobs, families, and sometimes even their wealth. These men and women of faith were called to leave their ideas, and follow Jesus. The choice was simple: either you were a follower of Christ or you were not. If you were not willing to sell all that you had, you were not worthy of the calling. If you were only willing to give some like Ananias and Sapphira, you were put to death. Jesus wanted men and women who were willing to follow him no matter the cost. He wanted true witness, and living disciples. He wanted authenticity. He wanted the real deal. He wanted ALL. When Jesus calls, you must go.
I believe one reason why women struggle with calling is because they are not sure of themselves. Some women lack confidence, and struggle with issues of identity. Some women are insecure, because they have never been praised for who God has made them to be. People have told them you are not strong, you are weak, you are not worthy, and you have misheard the voice of God. In some circles, women are second and are always the last to be considered. Women are sometimes forgotten, and when we look for leaders, sometimes we look around only at the men. God forgive us. But, in the gospels we can see that Jesus did not view women as second. Jesus called many women to be disciples, and to follow him. A woman disciple was the first to know of the resurrection. The angel told her to go and tell the male disciples. She was the first one with the resurrection message. When Jesus calls you, you must go.
Another reason why women may struggle with their calling is because they do not see other women seeking out ministerial callings. They see exceptions to the rule, but they do not see women in ministry and leadership as the norm. When the exceptions get to the “top” of ministry, they often forget about the women who are trying to reach their calling. We have to learn how to support one another. In addition, some women have never heard a female preacher. Licensed female ministers are sometimes not even asked to sit on the pulpit as other male ministers are asked. Some women have never seen a female pastor. In fact, in some circles this is heresy talk! Women do not know their voice, because they have not heard the voice of women around them. But, when Jesus calls, you must go.
Maybe yet another reason why women do not follow the call of Jesus is because they believe God is speaking to everyone else around them. I have often heard women talk about their husbands calling, and tell me they are not called. Jesus always called the disciples in packs, and never intended for anyone to serve in a calling alone. We must always be connected to community. But, friends when Jesus calls, you must go.
Women are not alone in not following the call. There are plenty of men who have avoided the call of God on their life too, but in our society it has been far easier for a man to accept a call to preach than for a woman. But, when Jesus calls, you must go.
In the end, it will not matter the “why” for whether or not we decided to listen to the call of God. In the end, it will matter whether we said yes I am a disciple, or no I will not follow. God help us. Help us to follow the call, and feel the burden. Help us to reach people, and to follow after you in all of who we are and what we do. In the end, when Jesus has called, we must go.
Copyright 2014 Crystal Schmalz Ministries