The only reliable motive for encouraging women’s ministry in the local church is an insatiable longing to see the display of God’s glory in the local church. But God’s vision of the church has fallen on hard soil in our time. Christians show little appreciation for the importance of the local church and little zeal for its essential role in Christian discipleship and in bearing witness to a lost world of the reality of gospel community.
We need to reorient ourselves by the Word of God and embrace His attitude toward and vision for the local church. This radical reorientation must be based upon what the Church is and who the Savior of the Church is.
Without a proper esteem and love for Christ Himself, and and an understanding of His covenant love for His church, we will lack the motive-force to serve Him in the world. If our ultimate motivation for service to God is simply because we love people, we will never be able to sustain the call to service that God has given to us because the very people we are called to serve will break our hearts. It is only the grace of Christ that enables us to persevere.
– Ligon Duncan, Women’s Ministry in the Local Church, pp. 45-46 [emphasis mine].