I’m Not Supposed to be Here {Repost}

This post is very special to me because it was my very first post on The Candid Pastor’s Wife! I am reposting it because I think only 3 people read it, including me. 🙂 I am resting and enjoying family this week and hope you are doing the same.

I did not sign up to be a pastor’s wife. But I knew gals who did. When I was in college, I would ask a fellow chick, “What do you want to do with your major?” To which she would say, out of her utter sweetness, “I just want to be a pastor’s wife.” What? I didn’t know that was a career goal! If I had, maybe I would have thought outside the box a little more about my plans and changed them to, “Independently Wealthy Free Agent.”

I hesitate to say my husband was “called to ministry”, because all followers of Christ are called in this way:

Then Jesus came up and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20, NETBible

There was a definite time, though,  when he felt the burden for ministry, as the shepherd feels a responsibility for his flock. And my point is – this was after we were married! Worse, this was in our first year of marriage. I was shocked and sort of upset that he couldn’t have made me aware of this before I agreed to marry him! I mean, I do NOT fit the traditional pastor’s wife role – at least the caricature I had in my mind. I don’t wear makeup every day, and I almost never do my hair. I don’t usually wear dresses at all, let alone to church. But I’m also not frump girl. I wasn’t sure at this point whether or not I wanted children. I did not see myself saying Hello! to everyone with that lovely pastor’s wife smile.

But I could not deny his calling; in fact, I knew it was from the Lord. And when he has accepted to seminary with a presidential scholarship, I had to stop thinking about myself for a minute and instead think about an entirely new calling on our marriage – a pastor and pastor’s wife, joined together by God for His purposes. We had already dedicated our marriage to God and knew ministry would be a part of our lives. Now, it would be weaved through our lives in a very unique way.

Now that I have been a pastor’s wife for a bit, I feel sorry for these girls who dreamed of becoming a pastor’s wife. It is very different from what I thought it would be, and I’m sure it is for them too. My husband and I have hit many snags along the road, but God has seen us through every second and has made our marriage so much stronger by His grace.

God, you have called us with purpose, just as you did with the apostles (Mark 3:13-19), and just as you do with all believers. I thank you for how you are using this journey to teach me more about you. I pray that I would not feel sorry for myself ~ because your will is good and your plan is perfect. Transform me more today into the woman you want me to be.

10 thoughts on “I’m Not Supposed to be Here {Repost}

  1. Jenilee

    I have felt that burden for full time ministry my whole life. I knew the challenges of ministry from growing up as a PK but I knew God was calling me to it anyway. I love your take on this topic!

    1. Stephanie Post author

      Jenilee, thanks for adding that! I think it’s definitely a calling – one that some women have and one that some women accept. For me, I’m responding in obedience at this point. But I pray God gives me joy beyond my flesh.

  2. Cindy

    I’m glad you re-posted this because I was not one of the three to read it the first time. 🙂 I have been a pastor’s wife for 23 years now. Prior to that we did the youth pastor/associate pastor/bus pastor/children’s pastor thing, and the list goes on and on. I married at the young age of 17, much to my parent’s disappointment. I quit college to marry this man whom I felt God had placed in my life for this purpose. However, he was NOT a minister when I married him; a Christian, yes, but definitely NOT a minister. So I’ve paddled that same boat that you have. No, I don’t do the makeup thing, I’m not a girly-girl (in high school I played any sport that they let girls play), and I’m not the wonderful, outgoing, amazingly talented, special-day speaker that is expected of the traditional pastor’s wife. I’m not supposed to be here either, and yet, here we are. And I wouldn’t trade it for anything!
    God bless you, my sister!

  3. Susan

    Thanks for reposting. I too went to college wondering why girls wanted to be married by spring and be a pastor’s wife. That was not my goal. I did have a calling to the ministry, but in my eyes, I thought it would be different. I met my husband after he was already a youth pastor for some time. I remember one discussion after we were engaged when he asked me if I thought I could be a pastor’s wife and live in the fish bowl. I had no idea what I was getting into. He has since moved on to associate pastor and now to lead pastor over the past 8 years. In the beginning I felt I had to smile at everyone at the grocery store because everyone knew who I was and I only knew a small handful. Now I have moved beyond that and just go about my errands, chores, and meetings with people just like a normal person. I am glad to have found another “no make-up, no done-up hair, no fakie” pastor’s wife. Thank you for being so CANDID 🙂

  4. Michele

    Thank you so much for reposting. I am in my first year of marriage and my husband is a pastor. I’m having a really hard time being a pastor’s wife and trying to figure out just how to be a wife. We’ve had a rough start to our marriage which puts even more pressure on since he’s a pastor. This definitely was something I needed to read. I also am not that “traditional” pastor’s wife. I’d rather watch football than entertain a group of ladies for a tupperware party. 🙂 Thank you!

    1. Stephanie Post author

      I’m so glad you found me! Being married is SO hard, and being a pastor’s wife is just on another realm!

  5. martha brady

    if there is one thing i have learned in 42+ years of marriage and ministry, it is that very few pastor’s wives are the “type”. i always laugh when i hear that expression…and the variety of views that are held re what makes a great pastor’s wife! the caricature of the “perfect pastor’s wife” is from satan…to intimidate and immobilize servants of God that he does not want functioning.
    God made us the way we are for a reason. our primary ministry is to our husbands, then our family and next, our church. we are NOT responsible to be an extension of our spouse in that we handle interpersonal problems for him as a go-between. we refer people to him to discuss their issues with him! my husband has always wanted me to be involved in 1 church ministry. (my tendencies are over-involvement to the detriment of my family.) this is especially true when we move to a new church and i am more aware of what is entailed in my involvement.
    we need to be friendly in the natural way we show friendliness, not fake. the key to ministry is genuineness, not pretense. if your style is hospitality with 2 or 3 at a time, then do it that way, if it is large groups at a time, go for it. the most important thing is to be genuine and open with the people to whom God has called you to minister. that will always puts you in places where you will be called to risk being hurt…and it will happen. But until you take those risks in relationships, you won’t really get to minister to the people around you…and enjoy the rewards of trusting God to use you when you are spent and don’t think you have the resources.
    being a pastor’s wife is the most difficult, exciting, devastating, rewarding “job” i’ve ever had. i don’t know any 2 that are alike…just like church members! go figure:)

    1. Stephanie Post author

      And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why I’m glad I met Martha at the Relevant Conference. Thank you so much for encouraging us, Martha! I wish I had the wisdom to share what you shared with us.

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