Speaking Engagements

Upcoming Events: Ladies, You’re Invited!

Looking for a super, doctrinally sound women’s event to attend? Let me tell you about a few I’ve got coming up soon!

Alabama

Are you in the Opelika, Alabama, area? Come on out to Providence Baptist Church for the Staying on the Path in a World of Compromise women’s conference this Saturday, July 31.

During session 1, we’ll be talking about the authority, sufficiency, and necessity of Scripture in our lives. Session 2 is all about discernment. And get ready with your questions, because session 3 is going to be a fun time of Q&A.

The ladies of PBC’s WOVEN (Women Of the Vine Encouraging and Nurturing) women’s ministry are working hard to give you a great day of food, fellowship, and encouragement around God’s Word.

If you’re in the area, but not a member of PBC, you are warmly invited to attend, but space is limited and you must contact the church directly for tickets. Tickets are $25 each and include materials, lunch, and dessert.

Newly added to the Staying on the Path Conference,
a pre-conference meet and greet!

Arkansas

Can you handle the beauty of rural Arkansas in the fall? Well, it’s pretty nice, but it’s not as beautiful as the lovely ladies of Maranatha Baptist Church in Nashville, Arkansas. I’m looking forward to speaking with this delightful group for the second time.

In our first session, we’ll be tackling the topic of discernment – how can we tell the difference between the biblical and the cheap, unbiblical knock off? Modesty seems to be the current kerfuffle in evangelicalism, so we’re going to see what God has to say about that in session two. And, ready, aim, fire away with your questions in our final Q&A session! Breakfast items and lunch will be provided.

This conference is open to women in the surrounding areas, but you must contact the church directly for details. Come join us on Saturday, September 11, 8:15 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Montana

photo courtesy of WalMart.com

I have so been looking forward to getting together with these ladies. Our conference scheduled for last year had to be canceled due to COVID, but we’re back on track this year for September 25-26 (Sat./Sun.) at Ekalaka Bible Church in Ekalaka, Montana.

This conference is open to women in the surrounding areas, but you must contact the church directly for details.

Join us Saturday, September 25, from 3:30-8:00 p.m. for fellowship, worship, supper, and two sessions on biblical womanhood. What does the Bible tell us about our role as women? We’ll take a look.

Come back on Sunday, September 26, from 3:00-7:15 p.m. for more food, fellowship, and worship. Our first teaching session will be a fun time of Q&A, and in our final session, we will “learn to discern.”

Love these events and can’t wait for more? I’ll be posting more info. about my fall and winter events (in October, November, and January) as time gets closer.

I’m coming to see YOU,
California (x2!), Virginia, and Tennessee!

For more information on an event near you, or to schedule me for your own event, check out my calendar of events and booking information on my Speaking Engagements page.

Hope to see you soon!

Mailbag

The Mailbag: Nursing Home Ministry Questions

I recently received some questions about nursing home ministry, so I thought I’d put all the answers I’ve given in the past in one post so they’d be handy.

Originally published January 22, 2018:
The Mailbag:
Men attending women’s Bible study class at nursing home

A female relative of mine teaches a women’s Bible study at a Catholic nursing home (my relative is a Protestant Christian). Sometimes, a male resident or two – none of whom are saved – will wander in and attend her class. Occasionally, one of them attempts to correct her according to Catholic doctrine. Even though she’s not technically teaching “in the church” (1 Timothy 2:12) she’s uncomfortable with men attending the class, as well as with having to biblically correct their unscriptural Catholic doctrine. On the other hand, she shares the gospel every time she teaches, and she doesn’t want to turn away anyone who might receive the good news and be saved. What should she do?

I love it when Christians think deeply about issues like this. It is encouraging to interact with godly people who want to be obedient to Christ, and it pushes me to desire to obey Him better myself.

Foreword:

Just to lay a quick foundation for my answer to this question, it needs to be understood that people who currently believe and practice Catholic doctrine as it is written in Catholic documents are not saved. There are numerous unbiblical beliefs Catholics hold to (which I will not go into right now because that’s beyond the scope of this article) but for the purposes of understanding my answer, in a nutshell, the Catholic religion does not teach salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (in fact, Catholicism anathematizes {condemns to Hell} anyone who teaches this), works must be included in the salvation process. If you believe your own good works play any part in earning your salvation, you are not saved. Salvation is all of Christ, and Christ alone.

✢✢✢✢

I am assuming that whoever invited this teacher to teach a Bible study in the nursing home knows that she is Protestant and will be teaching Protestant (biblical) doctrine. I am also assuming that the person who invited her to teach is OK with this. I would not advise someone to give the appearance of teaching in compliance with Catholic doctrine and then surreptitiously “sneaking in” Protestant doctrine. That’s deceitful and dishonest, and it would be understandable for the Catholic residents to be correcting her.

✢✢✢✢

If you’re unclear as to why having men in her Bible study class is a dilemma for the female teacher, I’d encourage you to read these two articles before moving on to my answer:

Jill in the Pulpit

Rock Your Role FAQs (this article expands on my brief comments below)

Here are my thoughts on the issue:

1. If the people attending the study are Catholic, then the female teacher is evangelizing the lost outside of the church, not discipling (teaching) Believers who are the church, unless some of those attending the study have gotten saved (the question indicates none of the male “drop ins” are saved). Evangelism falls under the “do” of the Great Commission, not the “don’t” of 1 Timothy 2:12. (see #11)

2. We always have to keep the definition of “church” in mind when we’re talking about women teaching or holding authority over men “in the church.” The gathered body of Believers is the church, not the building in which they meet. The mere fact that a group meets in a nursing home, house, park, community center, or other edifice that isn’t a church building doesn’t automatically mean a woman is free to teach men (see #7). It doesn’t automatically mean she can’t teach them either.

3. If the male attendees are being disruptive and introducing false doctrine, the teacher is well within her biblical rights and wisdom to say that this a women’s only group and exclude the men. (The same would apply to excluding any women who behave the same way.)

4. If, at some point, genuinely regenerated men begin attending the class because they want to be taught the Bible, praise God! The best case scenario would be for the teacher to go to her pastor, explain the dilemma, and have him ask one of the associate pastors, elders, or another appropriate male church member to volunteer to teach the men.


Originally published February 18, 2019
The Mailbag: Potpourri (Prayer quilts, Discouraged husband, Jesus Calling at the CPC…)

I need some direction. I’ve been teaching/sharing God’s Word at a nursing home for over two years on Sunday mornings. We have mostly women, but there are two men who join us. I was asked by the nursing home to lead our little church because they haven’t been able to find any men willing to do it. That’s my dilemma, I know Paul said he wouldn’t allow a woman to teach men, I don’t know how to handle this. I myself am not part of any other church, so I don’t have a pastor to help. I’ve reached out to some churches, but no one is getting back to me. Since we can’t find a man willing to lead, am I okay to keep doing what I’m doing? 

That is quite the dilemma! Let me see if I can help.

You started your e-mail by saying, “I need some direction,” so I hope you’ll be open to some direction that’s in a bit of a different direction than the one you’re asking about.

It’s wonderful that you’re wanting to help out at the nursing home and teach God’s Word. We need more women in mercy ministries like this, and I’m sure you’re a joy and a blessing to the ladies. But I’m afraid there’s a bigger issue you need to deal with than whether or not to be teaching at the nursing home.

You need to find a doctrinally sound church, become a member of it, and attend and serve it faithfully. Church membership, fellowship, and service are not optional for Christians (Basic Training: 7 Reasons Church is Not Optional and Non-Negotiable for Christians).

The Bible knows nothing of unchurched Christians, and serving at the nursing home is not a reason not to be joined to a local church. You could always serve at the nursing home on Sunday afternoons after worshiping at your own church, or serve on another day. If you’re asking around at churches for someone to volunteer on Sunday mornings, this is why you’re not getting much of a response – you’re contacting churches. Pastors and their church members are supposed to be in church on Sunday mornings, not somewhere else.

I know you might be thinking that your group of ladies at the nursing home is your church because you called it “our little church”. It might be an awesome group of ladies with super close fellowship, but what you have there is a women’s Bible study class, not a church. It doesn’t have a pastor, elders, or deacons. It doesn’t have a membership, so there’s no mechanism for church discipline. Nobody is giving offerings or serving the Body. You’re not performing the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper (I hope). This is not a church.

Have you ever been on an airplane and noticed that when the flight attendant gives the safety instructions, she always tells you to put on your own oxygen mask first before assisting others with theirs? It’s good advice in this situation too. Right now, you’re disobeying Scripture by not being joined to a local church, so you’re setting a sinful example for your ladies while simultaneously teaching them that they need to obey God’s Word. Put your mask on first. Repent and join a local church. You also need to be sitting under good preaching and teaching at your own church so you’ll have something to give these ladies and to keep your own theology on track so you can make sure what you’re teaching them doesn’t veer off into false doctrine. Put your mask on first. You can’t help other people breathe if you’re passing out from lack of oxygen. Finally, joining a local church will fix the problem you mentioned of, “I don’t have a pastor to help.” If you’ll put your mask on first by finding a good church to join, you will have a pastor, elders, deacons, and lots of other men to help.

When we do things God’s way, in God’s order, most of the secondary things, like your dilemma about the men at the nursing home, tend to fall into place. Tell you what. You find a good church to join – maybe one of the ones you contacted for help (check out the “Searching for a new church?” tab at the top of this page if you need it) – get plugged in, and ask your pastor for some help with this. If he can’t or won’t help you, write me back, and we’ll go from there, OK? I’ll bet you won’t need to.


Originally published July 5, 2021
The Mailbag: Asked and Answered

Is it appropriate for a woman chaplain to teach men, evangelizing and then answering questions using the Bible to present truth in nursing home one on one or in a coed worship service at the nursing home?

I think I must have a number of followers who visit and care for those in nursing homes, because I’ve received several questions over the years about nursing home ministry. Can I just take a moment to say – thank you so much. What a blessing and an encouragement you must be to those precious ladies and gentlemen.

Let’s unravel your question just a bit because there are several issues at play:

First of all, should a woman even be a chaplain? I don’t want to give an across the board “no” because “chaplain” is such a catch-all term these days, and different organizations (hospitals, prisons, the military, nursing homes, etc.) probably all have different job descriptions for their chaplains which may or may not require a woman in that position to violate Scripture.

But if I were asked, “Should women be chaplains?” and I had to give a yes or no answer, my answer would be no, for the simple reason that most lost people (or even Christians) aren’t going to differentiate a chaplain from a pastor. To them, a chaplain is just a pastor who works in a hospital (or wherever) instead of a church. And it’s unbiblical for women to be pastors, so you don’t want to give the evil appearance of someone living in unrepentant sin. Even if you’re not technically violating Scripture in your position, you appear to be.

OK, for your next several questions, it’s immaterial whether or not these things take place in a nursing home:

Is it OK for women to evangelize (share the plan of salvation with a lost person) and answer biblical questions one on one with a man? Yes. Carefully and with wisdom: Rock Your Role FAQs #11

Is it OK for a woman to evangelize (share the plan of salvation with lost people) a co-ed group? Not if she’s essentially preaching a sermon and functioning as a preacher, which is what I’m inferring by your use of the term “worship service”. Rock Your Role FAQs #11

If it’s something more akin to you hanging out with 5 or 6 friends, some male and some female, and you start sharing the gospel with them, that’s different. That’s really more like a one on one situation.

Is it OK for a woman to preach/teach in or lead a co-ed worship service? No, regardless of the venue or her title. Rock Your Role FAQs #7 Rock Your Role: Jill in the Pulpit


If you have a question about: a Bible passage, an aspect of theology, a current issue in Christianity, or how to biblically handle a family, life, or church situation, comment below (I’ll hold all questions in queue {unpublished} for a future edition of The Mailbag) or send me an e-mail or private message. If your question is chosen for publication, your anonymity will be protected.

Doctrinally Sound Teachers

Doctrinally Sound Christian Women to Follow – 2

If you’re a long time follower, you’ve probably run across my article, 10 More Biblically Sound Blogs and Podcasts by Christian Women. Well, it needed updating and a fresh coat of paint, so to speak, so that’s what this article is, in case it looks somewhat familiar. :0) But I’ve added some new women to follow, so be sure to check them out. I’ll be updating the third article in this series in the near future.

The internet is glutted with “Christian” women’s blogs, many of which are anything but Christian because they don’t teach what accords with sound doctrine.

Well, genuinely regenerated Christian women have had enough. Enough of the false doctrine from celebrity divangelistas. Enough of the feel-good fluff that takes them nowhere in their quest for spiritual maturity. We want teachers who will push us to study God’s word, who exhort and encourage and even step on our toes as we seek to be conformed to the image of Christ.

If you loved Doctrinally Sound Christian Women to Follow – 1 and wanted more, you’ve found it.

IMPORTANT REMINDER: Don’t take my (or anyone else’s) word for it that any ministry, podcast, book, or blog is biblical in its doctrine. You MUST do the work of comparing with Scripture everything you read and hear. If it doesn’t match up with God’s word (in context), chuck it.

Berean Research– “Berean Research is a resource to help Christians equip and keep themselves and their brothers and sisters from falling into deception. 2 Timothy 4:3-4 warns us of a time when people will not put up with sound doctrine, but will gravitate to a great number of teachers who’ll say what their itching ears want to hear. We believe this deception has never been greater than it is right now. That’s why sound doctrine is so important.” Join Amy Spreeman and Marsha West over at Berean Research. Facebook Twitter

Abandoned to Christ– Sunny Shell writes “about marriage, biblical submission, parenting, friendships, evangelism, and my battle with a rare metabolic disease…all with the eternal, rich and hope-filled perspective of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I try to keep it real, while keeping it pure, to keep it praiseworthy.” Facebook  Twitter

The Outspoken TULIP– DebbieLynne Kespert’s blog “challenges people to think and live biblically within a culture that increasingly resists Christ. I desire to honor Him. Therefore, I will speak boldly about the Word of God, even when doing so goes against popular opinion. Scripture, not prevailing culture or evangelical fads, informs my worldview. I will address various trends in the professing church that defy sound Christian doctrine.” Facebook  Twitter

Solid Food Resources– Debi Martin’s excellent blog and podcast examine Scripture and a variety of theological topics. “Solid Food Resources exists to provide Biblically sound resources (solid food) for the maturing believer – helping Christians grow from milk to meat.”

Women Under Grace– Formerly a blog, Women Under Grace is now a Facebook group. “We are a community of Christian women who, first and foremost, seek to glorify God in all areas of our lives….predominantly a forum for dialogue between Reformed women. That being said, we welcome all those who genuinely seek to know the truths of the Scriptures…Our desire is that this would be a safe place where women can come to ask genuine questions and discuss a variety of topics from theology, doctrine, Scripture, and even how to address issues in culture and entertainment through a biblical lens. But most of all, we want to strive to cultivate an atmosphere that encourages the members to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” as we seek to “test all things” by the Scriptures.” Facebook

Naomi’s Table– Founded by Amy Spreeman, Naomi’s Table is a Bible study resource for women who are earnestly abiding in Jesus Christ through His Word. “Here at the Table, you are invited to peruse our Bible studies and use them for yourself or with a group to learn at the feet of our magnificent Savior, Jesus Christ. We study His Word and learn about the often confusing roles the world tells us we need to take on, and compare those pressures with what the Bible says about Godly women and discipleship. Since 2014, most of our Bible studies are taught by Beth Seifert.” Facebook  Twitter

Tulips & Honey– “The Tulips & Honey Hub is a group of like minded Reformed bloggers and podcasters seeking to make His name known to man, and to glorify Him!” Check out the T&H podcast and blog!  Facebook Twitter Instagram

Truth + Fire– You might have caught a glimpse of my friend Constance in the film American Gospel: Christ Alone, but did you know she has a blog and a podcast, too? “Truth + Fire boldly examines faith, pop culture, relationships and current events from a witty Christian perspective. Infusing humor, practicality and Biblical wisdom, its topics are covered full of righteous judgment and with as little filter the good Lord will allow. Its goal is to expose readers to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to declare the full counsel of God and to demonstrate the relevance of God’s Word in our present generation and individual lives. Readers should come away from this blog edified in their faith and encouraged to abide in Christ through further study and sincere application of His Word.”  Facebook  Twitter  Instagram

Thankful Homemaker– “Thankful Homemaker provides truth-filled, gospel-driven encouragement to homemakers who amid their ordinary days desire to honor and glorify God in all things.” Check out the TH blog and podcast hosted by Marci Ferrell. Facebook Twitter Instagram

Transformed for More– Sarah and Susan “are twin sisters with a passion to help provide Christians with resources to help them live a transformed life by the power of Jesus Christ. From 2016-2019, this site focused specifically on Christian teenage girls, but for 2020 and beyond, we wanted to expand it to help a wider audience.” Facebook Twitter Instagram


You can always find these – and more great Christian women and men to follow – at the Recommended Bible Teachers tab in the blue menu bar at the top of this page.

Church

Throwback Thursday ~ All Word and No Play: The Importance of Fun and Fellowship in the Doctrinally Sound Church

Originally published November 10, 2017

The mingled aromas of cakes and cookies, chips and dips and pasta salads, wafted from the kitchen into the living room and wove its way through the the quiet din of treble voices and joyful laughter sharing stories and recipes and tales of the work week.

Sunday School ladies were in the house.

I had invited them over for a time of fellowship and a brief discussion to gauge their interest in a women’s Bible study class I’d been hoping to start. Would any of them want to attend a weekly women’s Bible study? Which day of the week would be best? Morning or evening? Which book of the Bible or biblical topic would they like to study? My questions were met with a few polite and perfunctory answers until one of the ladies bravely ventured, “You know, we have good, solid preaching at our church, and we get great Bible study every week in our Sunday School class, but we never get to just sit around and visit and get to know each other better like we’re doing tonight. I think we need that more than another Bible study class.”

If I still had a hoop and could remember how to make a French knot, I’d embroider that on a pillow. Or maybe a pew cushion. She was right.

In recent years we’ve been privy to numerous churches who seem to be on mission to transform themselves into Six Flags Over Jesus. Pastors who deliver stand up comedy routines instead of preaching the Word. Helicopters dropping Easter eggs for the annual hunt. Disney-designed fire truck baptistries, video games, and bubble machines in the children’s department. Car, sports tickets, and vacation pacakge giveaways. Over the top Christmas variety shows. The evangeltainment force is strong on the high places.

But while churches need to be careful not to fall into the ditch of foolish fluff and worldliness, neither should doctrinally sound churches jump into the ditch on the other side of the road of turning every single church get together into a Bible study, worship service, or outreach project.

Some of you ladies are gasping in holy horror. (Don’t try to deny it. I can hear you.)

Please don’t hear what I’m not saying. Please. I am by no stretch of the imagination suggesting that churches should turn into amusement parks like the ones cited above. I’m not saying we shouldn’t hold copious numbers of worship services and Bible studies and outreach projects. We absolutely should. Preaching, teaching, discipleship, and evangelism should be the main focus of the church.

What I’m saying is that – in the hustle and bustle of studying and serving – we need to make sure we’re also leaving space for brothers and sisters in Christ to simply spend unprogrammed time together. Growing to know one another more intimately. Sharing our little everyday joys and sorrows. Laughing together. Deeply loving one another. Blowing off steam and having a little fun.

Those things don’t happen while we’re listening to a sermon, paying attention to a Sunday School lesson, or busily working on an outreach task. But they’re a vital part of growing in Christ together. As a family.

One of the many reasons local church membership isn’t optional for Christians is that it places us in the required environment for practicing the “one anothers” found throughout the New Testament. But how can we “through love serve one another” if we don’t know a sister well enough to know how best to serve her? How can we “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” if we never take the time to sit down with each other and find out what those burdens are?

If your church has solid biblical preaching, doctrinally sound Sunday School or Bible study classes, members who joyfully serve the Body when opportunities are presented, and who share the gospel with the lost, it’s OK to have the occasional event that doesn’t revolve around those activities, and instead provides the opportunity for simple fellowship between brothers and sisters in Christ. A church picnic. A men’s breakfast. A ladies’ night out. A potluck dinner on the grounds. A coffee klatch. A Christmas party.

And it’s not necessary to turn any of these events into a Bible study.

Why? Because when Christians get together, the talk invariably and organically turns to things of a spiritual nature.

I gave a lot of thought to what the lady from my Sunday School class said at our fellowship that evening. And instead of planning a weekly Bible study, I started planning the occasional ladies’ night out – a simple dessert fellowship at my house, or dinner at a restaurant. Every time we get together, we inevitably end up talking about spiritual matters. Once, we spontaneously gathered around and prayed for a sister who had shared some things she was struggling with. Another time, we brought up some Scriptures to encourage one of the ladies who was walking through a particular issue with her child. We’ve discussed and recommended good godly books (and warned against some poor ones) to each other. We’ve laughed a lot, and sometimes cried, but mostly, grown…together.

People talk about what they’re most passionate about. And Christians are most passionate about the things of God. We need to be sure we’re trusting and believing that, not fearing that if we don’t have a devotion at our dinner, or have our coffee in one hand while doing a missions project with the other, that church members will suddenly abandon Christ and start dancing around the Asherah pole. And we need to know God well enough to know that He is not somehow displeased when His people simply interact with each other over whatever comes to mind without a biblical outline and three commentaries on the table.

Also unbiblical and, thus, spiritually unhealthy, is the mindset that if we’re not meeting for organized preaching, teaching, or ministering, we have no reason for meeting at all. Not true. When I hear from women who attend doctrinally sound churches with that attitude, what I most commonly hear from them is that they’re lonely. They have no one they can call, or talk to, or pray with when they have a problem to sort out or joyful news to share because they don’t feel close enough to anybody in their church. That’s a crying shame. No healthy Christian in a doctrinally sound church should regularly feel isolated and lonely.

Good preaching, teaching, and outreach are imperative for every church. But so are the heart to heart relationships between Believers in the Body. So do the studying, listen to the preaching, and work your fingers to the bone serving, but don’t leave out fun and fellowship. All Word and no play makes for an unbalanced, unhealthy church.

OHCW Women's Conference

OHCW Women’s Conference ~ Day 5

Ladies, welcome to Open Hearts in a Closed World 2021 online conference!

All this week, I’ll be posting each daily conference session here on the blog. You can watch here, or on the AGTV app, YouTube, IGTV (Instagram), or Facebook every day this week, July 12-16, 8:30-11:00 a.m. (CST).

The conference is totally free and you don’t have to register or sign up. Just tune in each day at your convenience and watch the teaching sessions. You could even gather up some friends and watch together! (Send me some pics if you like!)

Many have asked whether or not the sessions will still be available to watch later in the day and after this week. Yes. (As a matter of fact, if you missed last year’s conference, you can still catch all the sessions here.) BUT – once the live broadcast (8:30-11:00 a.m. CST) is over, it will take approximately one hour to process the YouTube version of the video (below) from “live” to “permanent” status, so it will not be available during that time period.

Special exclusive for my followers:

I’ve put together a two page outline for you that goes with my teaching session on Thursday (July 15) in case you’d like to take notes and have all the Scripture references handy. You can grab it here.

Here’s today’s session. (For more info. on the conference, speakers, schedule, etc., keep scrolling.)


Due to processing from “live” to “permanent” status on YouTube, this video will be unavailable between approximately 11a-12p CST.

Watch the remaining sessions of the conference at these links: Day 1 Day 2 Day 3  Day 4

The theme of this year’s conference is Reverence in Radical Times, and our focal passage will be Titus 2:3-5:

Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.

Titus 2:3-5

2021 Speakers:

2021 Teaching Schedule:

For more details on the conference, visit the OHCW website, follow Open Hearts in a Closed World on Instagram, or join the OHCW Facebook group and ask the conference organizers directly.