Thank you pastor… from the pastors wife
I often see, firsthand, the tiring lifestyle that coincides with his pastoral call. As the pastors wife, I have a front row seat to the long hours and the tireless spirit that drives him. I feel his exhaustion in my own body. Sometimes, it seems tangible. Thank you pastor (note: I know the comma is missing. It’s for SEO reasons).
Back to the post.
To this day, I still have no clue how that guy manages to meet everyone’s needs and mine too. He’s at funerals, hospitals, community events, sits on boards, manages a staff, mentors young ministers and I’ve only begun to scratch the surface. He does so much for so many.
Then, when he comes home, he somehow brings joy and laughter – sometimes it’s organic, other times I think he must manufacture it. Anyone would have to after the long days he puts in.
Every evening, he collapses somewhere near me and inquires about my day. Usually, by the time he gets home, I can’t even remember much about it, so I usually make up something interesting.
On a regular basis, I tell him how wonderful he is to me (as a husband). How he loves me so completely and genuinely. I give him many kudos about his fathering skills and how good he is to our extended family as well.
However, it occurred to me today, I don’t tell him what an incredible pastor he is very often.
Not sure why I don’t… or maybe I am. See, we have a line in our lives. The outside life stays – for the most part – outside. I’m glad I’ve instituted that. Sure, I listen to him vent and share concerns, but I don’t allow many topics aside from that. If he brings all that here, then home ceases to be a respite, you see. He’s my husband and the cares of his vocation must never come in here and thwart the potential for peace in these wall.
As crazy as it sounds, I often forget him as “pastor”.
Although he’s just my ‘honey” to me, work is important to men.
Work, in itself, is part of men’s Godly purpose. God assigned a job to Adam before He gave him Eve. Work gives men confidence and fulfillment. We should honor that, don’t you think?
So, this is my “I want to say thank you, pastor” post.
Here it goes:
Thank you pastor for all the people you encourage from the pulpit.
Thank you pastor, for those people you persuade to continue to live another day instead of taking their lives suddenly in despair.
Thank you pastor for starting at a place of “yes” when asked if a new ministry or effort can happen at the church.
Thank you pastor for staying after church and talking to a crazy-long line of people even though many other pastors jet out after service thronged with security and mystery. Who do they think they are… Jay Z?
Thank you pastor for esteeming the elders of the church – both living and dead.
Thank you pastor for keeping the hymns part of our church culture (sometimes).
Thank you pastor for hosting internships so the next generation will be strong in faith and committed in ministry.
Thank you pastor for being a good leader of your staff and supporting them devotedly.
Thank you pastor for sitting among congressmen, dignitaries and still keeping your “down home” charm and southern sensibility.
Thank you pastor for honoring me – your wife -to the point of embarrassment every chance you get.
Thank you pastor for mentoring younger pastors and giving wise counsel.
I could go on and on to say thank you pastor for a lot of things.
But, I won’t. You have a life offline.
Sure, my husband has deficiencies. Who doesn’t? I can’t deny that.
Something would be very wrong if I were married to him this long and be unaware of them or in denial about them.
However, I think it’s more important to focus on his strengths and communicate those to (and about) him often, don’t you think?
If you’re married to a pastor, you know that pastors are among the most insecure people deep down at the core of who they are.
Most men of greatness are. They just figured out Psalm 56:3:
“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.”
Think of the characters in the Bible. All the people God selected had “warts” and had a sense of “OH NO, NOT ME, LORD!” when the Father called them to do great things
That’s why we, as pastors’ wives, must be intentional about telling our husbands how amazing they are in both their cleric’s robes and their blue jeans.
My husband is not a big “gift” person, so words of affirmation really bless him. How does your husband receive blessing? Consider doing just that and telling him you appreciate his service to the congregation. What do you think?
“How did I do?”
They ask us about their sermons for a reason, Girl. There’s a hint of vulnerability seated in that question.
While we must be honest with our opinions, we need to be more affirming than honest.
Trust me: enough people are dishing out their version of “honesty” to him. Likely it tears down more than builds up. We build up.
From us, they need our feedback filtered through our loving respect, acceptance and persistent loyalty.
“I always know you’re on my side” my husband once told me.
While I felt good about that statement, I felt a little bad for all the years I wasn’t verbally and visibly supportive. Oh well. Now, I know better.
I didn’t know how significant my support actually was until I grew closer to him and began to see his heart.
Congregants will criticize. Sometimes even extended family will criticize them, so we must be in their corner – not “worshipers” of them – but, inarguably in their corner.
They have enough people saying “You’re terrific, Pastor!” – our “you’re terrific” will mean so much more because we know the deficiencies.
Also, here’s the “kicker” … we may not always “feel” like encouraging them. Just like we move past our feelings in other areas, we gotta move past them in this one. While they are getting criticisms from others people, other women are also right there to praise them. We must do it often and well.
What do you think? In all the stresses they face, wouldn’t our praise and protection mean something more significant?
I think so. So, thank you, Pastor Baby. 🙂
Hey, what do you thank your pastor husband for? Don’t be upset if I “steal” it and tell my husband the same. Ha!
PINT “Thank you pastor – from your wife”Image: Ben White
Married to a Pastor.com is a blog for pastors wives focused on offering encouragement for a pastor’s wife as well as insight on being a pastor’s wife…from one pastor’s wife to another.