So, I went to a Pastor’s Wives Retreat last week. Yes, I left the very same day, actually the very same hour after all of our houseguests left, leaving 2nd man with the children and the mess. This was a great strategy as it gave me a couple of days to breath and unwind while 2nd man cleaned up. I really must remember this in the future, hee hee chuckle chuckle. It wasn’t my intention to leave him like this, but I really like these retreats and always glean greatly from them, so 2nd man didn’t mind my getting away. The only complaint I had was that all of these other pastor/associate pastor/youth pastor wives kept checking their text messages for two days. Always looking at their phones awaiting those important messages that affirm that they are important people. I, on the other hand, got…well…nothing. 2nd man assured me that was because all of their husbands had to keep asking things like, “where are the diapers?” or “how do you do dishes?” or “what’s there to eat?” While he, was taking charge and caring for house, home and family for me as a competent husband. Well, I guess I’ll let him off the hook on that one. He did do a pretty good job and I did come home to a cleaner house than what I left along with dinner made and dishes done. Yes, I’m spoiled nah nah nah nah nah.
Anyway, back to my thoughts here. I’ve mentioned this before, oh somewhere in this blog, that this is where I first learned that I’m not really a pastor’s wife. Funny, I would have gone on blissfully naïve had I never attended one of these retreats. However, I actually vehemently disagree with this viewpoint and go to the retreats anyway. You may think it odd that I’d even want to go, but despite the narrow views of some people attending these conferences, I still always, without fail, get a huge blessing from the ladies chosen to speak. I was pleased to see that my stubbornness and my pastor’s wife’s insistence had paid off. This year there were many other associate and youth pastor’s wives in attendance. Maybe we started something like a small revolution in honor of our husbands or something…well…maybe we’re not quite that important. J However, in talking with one of the ladies I’d never met before, I naturally (or so I thought) asked her what “they” did at their church. To which she responded rather taken aback “this is the only place where I’m identified with what my husband does.” “Wow,” I thought, “Isn’t that our role and even a privilege?” I guess I sound very backward and unfeminist-like, but I find perfect peace in being my 2nd man’s wife. I’m perfectly comfortable being his help meet. But, then I wonder, “am I a weirdo?” well, probably yes, but also it’s a battle for most women. If I were a doctors wife I’d have a different set of circumstances and sacrifices. However, I’d still have those things in my life because of who my husband is and what he does. If you’re married, there’s really no getting around it. You are one with another person. Though you have your own thoughts and feelings and even career sometimes, you are still laying aside your individualism when you marry…but I digress.
This stigma, however, does get me thinking about exactly what my role is in the church. I mean, my husband isn’t the senior pastor and I’m, well, kind of stuck in a no womans land. Oh, I strongly believe that those in ministry are as responsible as those not full time in ministry to carry out the calling of God in their life wherever he puts them. It’s a Christian duty and discipline that is universal to all God’s children. However, there is a little more to it than that when your husband is in full time ministry. There are still circumstances and people that you deal with that the average lay worker does not deal with day to day. Here I am even wondering what is the role of any pastor’s wife? So here are some beginning thoughts on the subject that I’ve started delving into. This is not the end all on the subject, but this is a blog and I’m sharing my thoughts, not teaching on authority here.
First, I was thinking about what exactly 2nd mans role entailed:
2nd Man’s Role:
I Timothy 3:1-7 This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. 2 A bishop then must be blameless the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behavior, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) 6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
Though he is not senior pastor, his title includes the name pastor and his education and ordination qualify him. Therefore, he is still required to hold to these standards. Rather than a lesser man, he is more appropriately considered a type of specialist. That’s what 2nd men do, they specialize in youth or music, maybe counseling, outreach etc.
Titus 1:6-9 If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly. 7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not self-willed, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre; 8 but a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate; 9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
Several of the above qualifications are directly related to the family:
· ruling well his own house
· husband of one wife
· having faithful children
· given to hospitality
All four of the qualifications are indirectly related to me as a wife. He could not accomplish them as well without me. That’s not a prideful statement; just a statement of realization of what God has called me to do. Though 2nd man is ultimately responsible for overseeing this, and of course fully engaged in execution of it, I am also a part of this and helper in these areas. He could be hospitable without me, but it sure is easier if I can have the home ready, the kids under control and a meal available. He is responsible and engaged in the rearing of our children and the running of our household, but I’m usually the day -to-day manager of the training of our children. It’s kind of like I get to be the 2nd woman to the 2nd man.
My role as a wife (any ole wife)
Proverbs 18:22 Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favor of the Lord.
Proverbs 19: 14 House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from the Lord
I want to be a gift from God to my 2nd man
Titus 2:4-5 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To b e discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
We often look at this scripture in light of the job of an older woman. But take a look at what she is supposed to be teaching. Those are the qualities we are to obtain. Notice these verses aren’t just for a “pastor’s wife,” but for wives in general. We just tend to get held to the standard more. I’m going to look further into this area in another post. As we all know there are scores of verses and books written about how to be a good wife. The point is that, as a 2nd man’s wife, I, first and foremost need to be a diligent Christian and secondly a godly wife. From there the priorities start to vary based upon if there are children or an outside job or if I help to assist my husband in his ministry. More thoughts to come, but until then ladies, realize that your role is important.