written by Carrie
Ah ha. I have the fun chapter to discuss this week.
As I mentioned in the introduction, Hunt and Duncan favor a complimentarian view of women and men, striving towards upholding a Biblical view of the roles that each sex plays. Women are not subservient to men, but they do have different skills and talents which they can use to compliment the men. Chapter 5's discussion is more of the same.
Hunt makes two particular points that I'd like to focus on, and I'd like to bring this back to what this means when it comes to offering hospitality in our own homes, in a partnership with our husbands.
#1 - "A woman's ministry should be a quiet-spirited ministry that causes no disturbance in the male leadership." (page 72)
#2 - ". . . [S]ubmission in marriage and submission in the church cannot be separated. If a woman does not submit in her marriage, she will bring that rebellious attitude into the church. A leader of women, including single women, must have respect for and commitment to God's kingdom order in the home and church." (page 75)
To this I would merely add, (without arguing over the definition of submission, as I think I'd just refer back to the Danvers statement as I pointed out in the Introduction), that in order for the woman to practice the ministry of hospitality in the home, she needs to be in agreement and under the care of her husband in doing so.
Think about it. Women like to talk more. They like to get together and gab. They are more relational than men tend to be. Yet, men also crave good fellowship and the woman is sometimes in the best position to create an environment to foster healthy, spiritual fellowship with others in the home. But in order to practice hospitality successfully, it would behoove her to seek the opinions, advice and personal preferences of her husband in doing so. Stephanie wrote a great post on this recently, about the differences between her and her husband's extrovert/introvert tendencies. By finding out what kind of gatherings and events her husband most appreciated, she can serve both him and their family well when she plans to offer hospitality to others.
Husbands and spiritual authorities can offer a great deal of protection in helping the woman to gauge herself and her own energy levels well when deciding how much to take on. The man's role of overseer and protector of the home can be a great boon to her as she makes plans and sets schedules. This isn't something to balk over. Rather, it is something to be embraced as each sex helps its help meet!
I think that's the point I would draw away from Hunt's book. In order to engage in ministry inside or outside of the home effectively, it is beneficial for a woman to understand the life giving gifts and the role that God has given to her. Exercised effectively, and the ministry blossoms exponentially because she has submitted herself to her God, and to her husband and has accepted and embraced the role that she has been given to fulfill.
Women really have great deal of power to either destroy fellowship with others or to bring and birth life into relationships and situations. Understanding that role is imperative - especially as we are focusing on how to reach out to others and properly share Christ and His word to one another.
I continue to think Women's Ministry in the Local Church is extremely relevant for the topic of hospitality. If you have avoided this discussion so far, I hope you'll reconsider and think about what you might bring or add to our discussions here as we seek to be God-honoring women in all that we think, say and do.