Common Question of Senior Pastor’s Wives #1: Should I be friends with women in the congregation/church?
The short answer to this question is NO! Before you “shout me down”, let me finish.
First, define “friend”. I define friend as a person I can confide in transparently 100%. With this person I share my challenges with my hair, my weight, my job, my business and even my husband. Ooops! There lies the problem.
Pastors’ wives can’t be that transparent.
Under no (NO!) circumstances should you share your marital information with individuals in your congregation. For instance, say your husband acts like a pumpkinhead. You need to vent to your friend. It’s only normal. But, remember he is still the pastor and undershepard of that church. The congregation needs to be able to hear him clearly in that capacity from the pulpit. Do not mess with his spiritual mantle – protect it. No member needs to be haunted with memories of how he didn’t load the dishwasher, came home late or any other rant you may disclose to your “friend”. I have tons of other examples, but you get the picture.
I believe we should be friendly. There are even some people I would call close to me. But, I can’t say we are friends in the term I’ve been raised to think of the word. I enjoy lunches and fellowship. However, I must be fair. If I lunch with one, I must be open to lunch with another. No favorites or cliques. That is not Godly, but I digress.
Yes, I say be friendly. I’ll take it further, we should be loving, long-suffering advocates in which women in our congregation may get spiritual support, guidance, love and 100% acceptance at all times. Always be available to give a word of encouragement and most of all be ready to the speak the Word of God in strength, counsel, confidence and knowledge.
Marrying a pastor presents it’s sacrifices. It cost what it cost.
Friends are few in this lifetime; acquaintances are many. Know the difference. I have a longtime friend who lives outside my city. I speak to her in complete candor because I can trust her with my confidence without worry of betrayal. I trust her with my “life” and she trust me with hers. To me, that’s friendship.
“The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her…”–Proverbs 31:11
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