What You May Not Know About Your Pastor’s Family

Saturdays can be really hard. Nightmares and family arguments and just plain weariness. If all Christians are on the target, those in full time ministry seem to sit on the bullseye – especially on Saturday. Satan does not want the truth preached. He knows if he can bring down the leader, he can scatter the flock. And so our culture, our media, our own brothers and sisters in the faith seem to be shocked when those in ministry “fall from grace.” Who ever wrote that statement? Can it just die already? Because we are all falling….and it needs to be into HIS GRACE. What if every Christian set their alarm for noon on Saturdays and said a short prayer for their minister and pastors all over the world? Powerful.

We need people. Just like you. We want to be invited to things. We want to share our real lives. Because Reverend and Pastor’s Wife are the calls we answered, not the people we are. We have real struggles and real needs too. We need to walk out our faith with people we can trust. And we are always looking for the trustworthy. To hold our hand and love us just as we are. Works in progress trying hard to follow after God one deep breath and mistake at a time. Sometimes we get it wrong. We just pray every day that most of the time we get it right.

We are not keeping a checklist with you.You don’t have to get all nervous when we run into you at the store and you are buying your beer. (This happens – the nervousness) It’s okay. Really. We are not mall cops. We don’t have a Segway. And that one time you shared something with the pastor…seriously, he is not thinking about it. And in most cases – in my husband’s case every time – the pastor did not share it with his/her spouse. The spouse is not privy to confessions made in the pastor’s office. When people come up to me at church and want to catch me up on the situation with their cousin, and I look all “What?” – it’s because office talks really do stay there. But what we do know or did hear – we’ve moved on. We are not your judge. We have our own checklist to work on. You can relax around us.

We are afraid of offending you. Listen, the more we speak, the more we are likely to offend. And those in ministry speak. A lot. I didn’t think this was my problem, until I noticed I started questioning everything I said to anyone in the hallway…and “did that come out wrong?” We can be FROZEN by the fear of offending. Because sadly, we all seem to take offense quite easily. Or just question people. It’s called paranoia and it binds. And here is the deal: sometimes we just all say “those things.” Sometimes it just comes out wrong. What if we all gave our brothers and sisters and ministers about 10 free passes. They just said something that made you think, “hmmmm” but then you say “PASS.” Unless this is a real biblical concern, let’s try to just not take offense. And maybe your minister will just take a deep breath…and trust God.

We wrestle with a passion. It’s constant. We talk about it at night, late…after the kids are down. And early in the morning. And at lunch. This is not just a job for us. We are hungry to see a move of God and bring others into His family. We don’t just talk about praying. We do it. We do it for you. We believe in what we preach, and as much as you want the church to thrive, you can bet your leaders do. But not for numbers and not to compete with the church across the street. We just want to obey Him. This is real and we will answer to Him. It’s our heartbeat.

We hear a lot of voices. It’s no longer just the voice of the church vs. the voice of the world. The Church is saturated with articles about what we SHOULD BE DOING. Sometimes we go to conferences and we are just tired because of all the “new” things we should try in our church. And sometimes they differ. I don ‘t want to go into statistics, but burnout happens here: What we aren’t doing. When we work with all we have and it’s still not enough. Ministers quit for lack of encouraging voices. Because church has become a modern trending topic. What band plays there? Their missions team did this. They have more youth. We don’t focus enough on this. And before you know it, church becomes all about what we need to fix. Competition makes us tired, because guess what? We cannot always keep up with the Jones’ church. And is that what this is all about? What if we all only talked about what our church does that is GREAT. What if we only spoke to our family and our minister about how we are changing the world? What if we only spoke life? We hunger for life-giving words.

We need to be fed. Not bread and water. The good stuff. Because we feed others a lot and just like you, it is so nice to go somewhere – just sit – and hear the Word spoken. Sometimes, though rare – we want to be spectators. But mostly, we are hungry for Spirit stuff. Conferences, retreats and YES – sabbaticals are needed so we can be our very best. It’s like motherhood. The more breaks we get, the better we will be when we are with you. Has your pastor gotten away lately?

We really appreciate you. Staff. You carry a passion with us. We CANNOT do this church thing without you. Every thing you do is important. Really important. You are carrying our message to the community. You are changing the Kingdom of God. One life, one meeting, one day at a time. When it becomes just a job and you are tired – tell us. We care about you. Volunteers. I cannot possibly EVER overstate how much we need and value YOU. You keep the church rocking, moving and believing. The body is not whole without all parts. When volunteers stop, ministry stops. Because leaders cannot carry a church alone. When you choose just one thing – ONE THING – to invest in and you give it all your heart – you hold up our family of faith like a pillar.

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