how to prepare to be a pastors wife

How to prepare to be a pastors wife

So you are marrying a pastor? I was just thinking about women entering the “fishbowl” of ministry. It prompted me to write this post. If you are wondering how to prepare to be a pastors wife or if your husband is assuming leadership in a church – this post is for you. Now, if you are hoping to be a pastor’s wife, what are you thinking? I don’t say that because being a pastors wife is an undesirable state of being. No. It’s actually a blessing if you know who you are in the Lord and what God has placed you here for. However, so many women long to become a pastor’s wife because they like the illusion of it all. They like the power. They like the influence, and they love the pastor in an inappropriate way. This blog post is not for you if you are any of these people.

I’m writing this blog post for women who are engaged to a man who happens to be a pastor.

I’ve been married to my husband for many years. Yet, I still don’t consider myself an expert. Who can be an expert on how to prepare to be a pastors wife? There are so many experiences associated with it. Here are a few:

You could have a small church in which you need to be everything to your husband, from a church “first lady” to an administrative assistant.

You may have a husband with an established church and limited staff – meaning you have to fill a lot of roles.

You have a husband with a fully staffed church and a large congregation, and your role will be more about prayer, intercession, and visibility.

Lastly, your husband’s expectations will vary. That is a huge contingent.

Do you see my point? So many variables are associated with being a pastor’s wife, so it is incredibly difficult to advise on how to prepare to be a pastors wife. I wrote a post about what I think the key characteristics of being a pastor’s wife are. Check that out here.

Still, I’ll try.

Grab your phone or a sheet of paper.

Let’s talk about how to prepare to be a pastors wife…

My number one tip on how to prepare to be a pastors wife:

Know who you are …NOW.

After you marry or your husband accepts his call to ministry, life will blur like a dream sequence in one of those old movies.

As a result, it is important to have a firm grip on who you are as a person. Know what your strengths are and what you bring to the ministry. Shucks, know what you bring to the world, for that matter!

Discovering yourself and understanding your strengths is like embarking on a thrilling journey of self-discovery.

To kick things off, take some time for introspection.

Reflect on your experiences, values, and passions. I don’t want you to focus on your career exploits or your degrees. Sure, those things factor into who you are, but they are NOT who you are.

I want you to shine a microscope on you as a person.

What are your gifts? What do you like to do?

What activities make you lose track of time?

What brings you genuine joy?

These are often indicators of your strengths.

If you get stuck or cannot think of any strengths, don’t shy away from seeking feedback from friends, family, or colleagues—they might offer valuable insights into your strengths that you might not have recognized. Make sure they are genuine friends, not people who envy you. Young people have the term “frien-enemies.” Don’t go to them. Go to someone who really loves you.

Here are some common strengths to prompt your thinking:

Sure thing! Strengths can vary from person to person, but here’s a list of some common strengths that individuals often possess in workplaces – let them inspire your thought process:

  1. Communication Skills: Effective verbal and written communication.
  2. Leadership: The ability to guide and inspire others.
  3. Teamwork: Collaborating well with others towards a common goal.
  4. Creativity: Thinking outside the box and generating innovative ideas.
  5. Problem-solving: Analyzing situations and finding effective solutions.
  6. Adaptability: Flexibility and ease in handling change.
  7. Time Management: Efficiently organizing and prioritizing tasks.
  8. Resilience: Bouncing back from setbacks and challenges.
  9. Empathy: Understanding and connecting with others emotionally.
  10. Critical Thinking: Evaluating information and making informed decisions.
  11. Decision-making: Making sound choices based on analysis and intuition.
  12. Self-motivation: Initiating and sustaining tasks without external influence.
  13. Initiative: Taking proactive steps and being self-driven.
  14. Detail-Oriented: Paying close attention to specifics and accuracy.
  15. Positive Attitude: Maintaining optimism even in challenging situations.

Once you’ve got a handle on your interests, it’s time to play to your strengths.

Embrace your unique qualities and leverage them in various aspects of your life. As you know, whether in your personal relationships, career, or hobbies, aligning your activities with your strengths can lead to a more fulfilling and successful life. The same goes for ministry marriage.

Write down your top 5 strengths. I’ve written mine in my Bible so I can look at them when I have a season of struggle or personal discontent.

Don’t judge my handwriting. haha I envy you folks with pretty handwriting. I so wish I did. :/

how to prepare to be a pastors wife

The point is knowing your strengths prevents you from falling into a cycle of low self-image (and hence needing attention all the time) or being jealous of other women.

How to prepare to be a pastors wife #2:

Do a spiritual inventory

Where are you in the key disciplines of our Christian faith? Listen. Being a pastor’s wife is so much more than smiling and waving. It involves being a woman of prayer and dogged faith. If your husband (or husband-to-be) is like mine, he will do big things. He will build buildings. He will trust God for incredible feats. In doing so, your job is to pray for him and give him the encouragement he needs to roll with God’s plans.

All of this puts a bullseye on your back for the enemy. He will try to distract your husband by creating drama with you. That way, he can hinder God’s plans.

Do a personal assessment of your current spiritual state. Be honest with yourself so you will know what to change.

You’ve already journaled and reflected on your strengths. Now, move to a more expansive self-reflection:

  1. Self-Reflection: Take time to reflect on your beliefs, values, and principles. Ask yourself important questions about your purpose, meaning in life, and what truly matters to you. See my video below.
  2. Gratitude and Compassion: Cultivate a grateful mindset and practice compassion towards yourself and others. Recognize the blessings in your life and extend kindness and empathy to those around you.
  3. Community and Support: Surround yourself with positive and like-minded individuals who support your spiritual journey. Seek out communities or groups that align with your beliefs and values.
  4. Prayer: Establish a regular prayer routine to communicate with and seek guidance from God.
  5. Bible Study: How are your Bible study habits? Immersing myself in the timeless wisdom of the scriptures has become a cherished cornerstone of my life. It is not merely about accumulating knowledge but a profoundly transformative experience that grants me a deep understanding of the teachings of Christ. These sacred words shape the lens through which I view the world, influencing and inspiring my actions to align with His divine will.
  6. Worship: Become a worshipper if you are not one now. If you are not one. In your private life, show gratitude and reverence for God…when no one is looking. Don’t be shy about doing it in church, either. Be a model. Showing the women how to love and worship God without being self-absorbed.
  7. Love and Compassion: Do you love people? Embrace the teachings of Jesus by demonstrating love, compassion, and forgiveness in your interactions with others.
  8. Service to Others: Is service part of your life? Engage in acts of service and charity to help those in need. I’m currently going through a very hard season requiring me to be a caretaker. So, I’m not doing as much as I would like. Or wait. Maybe my caretaking role is my service. I don’t know. Either way, this is an important part of how to prepare to be a pastors wife.
  9. Self-Reflection: Regularly assess your actions, thoughts, and behaviors in alignment with Christian values, seeking personal growth and spiritual development.
  10. Fellowship: Surround yourself with fellow believers who can provide encouragement, accountability, and spiritual companionship. You will need a strong Christian base of friends to support you as a pastor’s wife.
  11. Gratitude: Are you grateful? Cultivate a grateful heart, expressing thankfulness for God’s blessings and acknowledging His presence in your life.
  12. Humility: Practice humility in all aspects of life, recognizing that all gifts and talents come from God.
  13. Integrity: Uphold moral and ethical principles in your personal and professional life, maintaining a consistent and Christ-like character.
  14. Forgiveness: Forgive others as Christ forgave you, letting go of resentment and embracing reconciliation.
  15. Generosity: Do you share your resources with others, whether it be time, talents, or material possessions?
  16. Discipleship: Mentor and be mentored by other Christians, fostering a culture of growth and discipleship.
  17. Faithfulness: Are you faithful? Stay steadfast in your faith, even in the face of challenges, trusting in God’s plan and providence.

Preparing to be a pastors wife #3:

Expect anything!

Ministry is an unpredictable journey filled with twists and turns, and the key to navigating its uncertainties lies in cultivating a resilient mindset and a well-rounded set of skills.

People will judge you. They will criticize you. They will say crazy things to you. Just know that.

Personally, I approach preparation for anything in life by focusing on adaptability.

Rather than fixating on a rigid plan, I embrace the idea that things (like above) will happen and change is inevitable.

This involves developing a mindset that welcomes challenges as opportunities for growth.

By honing my problem-solving skills and cultivating a positive attitude, I feel better equipped to face whatever comes my way on any Sunday or day.

Ministry’s unpredictability becomes less daunting when viewed as a series of learning experiences, and this mindset shift helps me stay agile and open-minded in the face of wobbly or challenging times.

Additionally, I prioritize building a strong support system. This is where the minister wives ministry at my church comes in.

But I also work outside that home, and this helps me create a larger group of friends.

Surrounding myself with a diverse network of friends, family, and mentors provides a valuable safety net when confronting life’s uncertainties.

Having a reliable support system offers emotional reassurance and brings a wealth of perspectives and advice to draw upon.

Whether it’s seeking guidance from a trusted colleague or learning from the experiences of those who’ve faced similar challenges, the strength of my support network empowers me to tackle the unknown in all parts of my life with greater confidence.

Your ministry journey may be unpredictable, but with a resilient mindset and a robust support system, I’m better prepared to navigate its ebbs and flows.

That’s it. Those are my tips on how to prepare to be a pastors wife.

Know who you are – as a person.

Know who you are – as a Christian.

Go with the flow, and you’ll be just fine.

What would you add to this list? Write it below and help someone else …and me too. 🙂

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