By on December 5, 2014 originally posted at the Institute for Faith, Work and Economics
When we look in the pews on Sunday morning, what kinds of women do we see?
Wives with their husbands? Mothers with their children? The single women sitting alone in the back rows?
Yes, they are all of those things and so much more. How do we use these women to grow and serve the church?
Camouflaged in Church
In America, 47% of the workforce is made up of women, and the percentage has doubled in every age category since 1950, according to the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee. The Committee also reports that 83% of women raising children work outside of the home, compared to 47% in 1975. AND a whopping 75% of them work full-time!
These women are out there. In fact, We may not realize that half of the women in the church are working women, because they are camouflaged.
We’re not talking about green outfits. No, her camouflage looks different. Her camouflage is her Sunday-best, children calling her “Mommy,” and maybe a strong, spiritual husband beside her. She blends with others because there is no other group for her.
And what about the single women who don’t get married until later in life? They don’t fit into the different affinity groups: “moms”, “married”, “divorced.” And the “singles” are often college-aged/recent graduates that don’t relate to them either.
Many of these women haven chosen to not marry yet and are in the workplace, but they often quietly slip in and out of church to avoid the sympathy, advice, and blind dates that are thrown their way. Sadly, they may end up seeing themselves as “not-mothers” and “not-wives” instead of someone who is pursuing her Ephesians 2:10 calling in the workplace.