July 23, 2011

Together Yet Separate

This calling to church plant makes for a unique partnership between a husband and a wife. The church planter's wife must not only whole-heartedly affirm her husband's calling, but she must also carry it as her own. Without her constant partnership and joyful assistance, his ministry cannot and will not persist.

It is a "together" calling.

In difficult seasons, I have sought ways to excuse myself from this together calling. I try to convince myself that this is Kyle's calling, his ministry, and that I can do as I like. Or I allow my feathers to be ruffled and fight for my rights, my reputation, and my own (separate) respect. Either way, I grow frustrated when his job requires too much from me.

My calling isn't to my husband. It is to God; church planting is what He's given to me too. My role looks so much different than my husband's, but it is just as real and just as vital to our together calling.

My calling isn't fueled by my husband. It is fueled by God. I cannot rely on my husband to give me wings for ministry, nor can I ride on his faith coattails.

Our together calling must be fueled by our individual pursuit of God. My ministry comes out of this consistent pursuit of God; without it I cannot properly fulfill my part of the together calling. I have been thinking about this lately, spurred by my devouring of The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer.

I cannot properly fulfill my calling as a helpmate to my husband when I fight against what God has so obviously asked me to do. I carry around my uncrucified flesh, self-pity, and pride instead of releasing myself to the Lord. But oh how my husband, my children, and my church need a woman submitted to the together calling and the individual passionate pursuit of the Lord.

Between the scribe who has read and the prophet who has seen there is a difference as wide as the sea. We are today overrun with orthodox scribes, but the prophets, where are they? The hard voice of the scribe sounds over evangelicalism, but the church waits for the tender voice of the saint who has penetrated the veil and has gazed with inward eye upon the Wonder that is God. --A.W. Tozer