All pastor’s wives are not created the same! There is no cookie cutter kit that came when we were called. A few years back I ran across something someone (unknown to me) had written, a satire describing the perfect pastor. I thought it was clever and pointed. I’m going to give you my own variation of this for the perfect pastor’s wife….
A Satire of The Perfect Pastor’s Wife
The pastor’s wife is perfect in every way! She supports her pastor/husband “round the clock’, but is available for all the ministry needs in her church, night or day. She and her children are present, front and center, every time the doors are open. She attends every service on every campus; arriving early and leaving late. Her children are always perfectly dressed, but well worn enough to demonstrate a humble heart. They are well behaved in public, and enthusiastically greet every adult with the finest manners; all the while being meekly quiet and speaking only when spoken to … you know, to be seen and not heard.
Her home is large and beautifully decorated, which makes her church proud, because she entertains regularly. Yet, her home is small and modestly adorned to demonstrate the unpretentious nature of her husband and family. She is an excellent cook and, to be frugal, never goes out to eat. She goes out to lunch several times a week to be involved in the lives of her friends. She has no friends so that others don’t get jealous.
She works full time as a schoolteacher to help support her family of four, all the while, being a stay-at-home mom. She volunteers at all her children’s school functions, while working 40 hours per week to build her in-home business.
She is present on social media, daily quoting scripture for inspiration. She is never on social media, as it distracts and leads to unwanted drama. If she sees a movie it’s rated G, but she never wastes time going to a movie or watching TV. She is friendly and meek. She is bold and strong. But, most importantly, she sings in the choir, and plays the piano, while sitting by her husband until he gets up to preach.
She is a beautiful woman in perfect physical shape, but also plump so as to not make other women feel jealous. She has short blonde hair to look youthful but also long straight dark hair, worn up, hiding her grey crown of splendor. She is tall, and one to admire and look up to. She is short so people can see over her head in church. Even though it’s expensive, she is the most fashionable lady in the church, setting the example of how to dress. She makes her own clothes to save money while demonstrating modesty and individuality.
If that isn’t enough for you, she is the women’s ministry leader, a Bible study teacher, a soul winner, an event planner, a public speaker, a personal mentor, a counselor, a children’s worker, a student ministry sponsor for camps, a preschool volunteer, and a greeter. She attends every women’s event within a 90 mile radius. She runs the prayer ministry, visits the hospitals and nursing homes weekly, and attends every funeral. She attends everyone’s home party and hosts wedding and baby showers. She serves at shelters and food kitchens. She has the greenest thumb in town and wins prizes for her garden. She sews and is an expert in all crafts. She interprets for the deaf, goes on all mission trips, is active in all community clubs, and neighborhoods, cheering and chairing the local organizations, attends all the sporting events in her community.
She … doesn’t exist!
Can I ask you some honest questions? What are your unique qualifications? By this I mean, the experiences that only belong to you … your background, your cities, your loves, your talents, your worldview, your influences, your hurts, brokenness, pain, joys, blessings, and your people? These things are what make you, you. No one else has your unique qualifications … just you! What are the gifts God has given you? What are your passions? What gives you joy in serving? Now … how long has it been since you did only those things? When was the last time you asked God what He wanted you to do to serve Him through your local church body? If God asks you, are you willing to step away from some of the good things you do so you can be the best version of yourself? Are you willing to stop being a “human doing” so you can become what you were created to be, a “human being”? Just “be”, and see how that fits.
You simply can’t do and be it all. Believe me, I’ve tried it! You can give it a go for a while but, eventually, it will slam you to the ground hard, and leave you weak and shaking. God asks you to love him with all your heart; love your husband and children; and to love people the way Jesus does. Seem impossible? In my strength and yours, yes, impossible! But relying on Him alone for every breath and word, it is possible. Our job is sharing the love and gospel of Jesus with those who desperately need him. Don’t get sidetracked along the way. It’s so easy to do the longer you are in ministry. Be on guard !
Remember, the best way to be the best pastor’s wife is to be the best version of who God created you to be. He knew you before the foundation of the earth. You are full of purpose! In Psalm 139, he wrote, “I will praise you; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are your works; and that my soul knows right well.” Don’t make the mistake of comparing yourself to other pastor’s wives, because one of you will come up short (or long) in the things that don’t really matter. What matters is being and doing what God tells you, not what church members expect or hope you’ll be and do.
We answer to God alone.
You and I live in a very odd fishbowl. But try thinking of it as swimming around to the pleasure and glory of God alone. If you need to, hold up signs that say, “Please Don’t Tap on the Glass!”
“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10)