September 25, 2013

What Pastors Want Their Wives to Know

I recently wrote An Open Letter to Church Planting Pastors with what I hope was the respect and grace pastors need and deserve. I also wanted to provide a gentle reminder to pastors that their vow is to their wives and not to Christ's bride.

It's easy (at least for me) to dwell on what I wish my husband understood about what being a pastor's wife means for me or how I'd like him to change. But how often do I stop and consider the burdens he's carrying and how I can help, support, and encourage him?

As I say in The Church Planting Wife, I can either be a help to my husband or I can hinder him in trying to fulfill what God has clearly called him to do:

"Because of this weight and the slow growth of our church, I watched my husband grow weary and discouraged. At the end of each day, when we sat on the couch together, tired and emotionally drained, he often looked at me with fear in his eyes. My husband--an innately gifted leader--questioned his abilities and wondered if there would ever actually be people to lead. Clearly, he was not yet in his ministry sweet spot, and he was a little shaken.

Instead of getting scared by the fear in his eyes or the discouragement in his voice, I recognized my opportunity to encourage him. Like Moses, he needed an Aaron to hold his weary hands up during the battle. And I could be his Aaron. I had always needed him to help me navigate ministry's waters, but now, clearly, he needed me.

In the beginning, I had affirmed his calling and, by going along wholeheartedly, taken it as my own. But once we got into the nitty-gritty of church planting life, I discovered that my helping ministry to my husband--a ministry only I could do--would be crucial to his success and well-being. I had a wifely job to do and I wanted to do it well."

In that spirit, let's turn the tables today and get a pastor's perspective on what pastors need and want most from their wives. Who better to ask then my own pastor-husband?

In the following video, you'll hear what he thinks pastor's wives don't often understand about being a pastor, how we can help our husbands "turn off" work, how we can gently correct them, when to ask about how things are at church (and when to not), and about specific ways we can support our husbands. Enjoy!
interview with Kyle from Christine Hoover on Vimeo.