An unsung hero – that’s what you could call a minister’s wife. Rarely do church members comprehend how much the pastor’s spouse endures and gives up for her husband’s job. The calling is tough, and many feel alone and judged by their congregation.
Who better understands the plight of a minister’s wife than a fellow clergy spouse? Take a look at some advice that pastor’s wives have offered to encourage and inspire others.
It’s easy for wives to fall into the trap of feeling that they must meet and exceed certain expectations from church members. Amy Goen’s husband, Kyle, has been in the ministry for 17 years. He serves as the executive pastor at First Baptist Church in Smyrna, Tennessee. Dealing with church expectations, Goen encourages wives to be themselves. “Early on in ministry, I had some great mentors who encouraged me to just be who I was and not try to conform to someone’s expectations. Focus on what God expects,” Goen says. Don’t be afraid to show the real you to the congregation, complete with flaws. It shows that you’re human and someone they can relate to.
Supporting your husband
Franklin Graham witnessed incredible spousal support between his parents, Billy and Ruth Graham. “My father would not be who he is today if it wasn’t for my mother,” he often tells people. It’s important to keep your home a safe haven for your shepherding husband. He needs a place where he can rest and rejuvenate, even if he is always “on call” for the church.
Beverly Hild’s husband is the lead pastor of First Baptist Church in Sarasota, Florida. They have been married for 28 years and Hild has discovered the importance of being a supportive wife for her husband. “I’ve learned that my husband does not need me to play the devil’s advocate in difficult situations; he has enough of those. I try not to give him advice unless he asks for it. He needs me to listen to him and trust his judgment.”
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Lifeway, Grace Clausing