Reaching Out for the Lifeline
“The truth is knowing and being known is the only way to last over the long haul in ministry.” -Kay Warren
My husband had just gone from High School Youth Pastor to Teaching Pastor at our current church. Which is basically, for him, a step in the direction he wanted to go. Not only that, but he started seminary, we bought our first house, AND welcomed our first child into this great big, beautiful world. All of these huge life changes in a short span of three months. Needless to say, these changes left my head spinning and I quickly realized I was in a bad place.
I was so excited for my husband and so proud of him for stepping further into his calling and gifts. Meanwhile, I felt like a fish out of water. With youth ministry, I was able to serve right alongside him at all our Sunday night gatherings, mission trips, etc. But now, how was I supposed to come alongside him and serve in his new role? Not to mention with a brand new baby in tow. I found myself starting to grow resentful, not only towards my husband, but the church, as well. I also felt very much alone in my feelings and struggles.
After quite awhile (many months) and many pity-parties later...I had an “ah-ha” moment of sorts. Being a part of such a large church, I knew for a fact that I wasn’t the only pastor’s wife there and I also had a feeling that there might be others who could relate to my same feelings and struggles as it pertains to ministry life.
I will never forget what I was doing and where I was at during that “ah-ha” moment. I was sitting at a Midweek Bible Study at church because, let’s be honest…FREE childcare. As soon as the light bulb went off, I messaged them right then and there and asked them about meeting on a regular basis to share in one another’s struggles, encourage one another, challenge one another and cheer each other on. All of them responded with a resounding YES!
This group of women, fellow pastors’/ministry wives, became a lifeline to me.
We met every Wednesday night for almost two years. This group of women, fellow pastors’/ministry wives, became a lifeline to me. We shared our joys and frustrations of life lived in ministry. We prayed with and for each other. We challenged each other in our marriages and in our walks with Christ. We were each other’s Aaron's and Hur's, holding each other’s arms up when we grew tired and weary. These women were some of the strongest, wisest, Jesus-lovin’, interrupted hopefuls that I have ever had the privilege of doing life with.
They propelled me to where I am today. Those that know me today, not prior to my “ah-ha” moment, only know the pastor’s wife who is leading Bible studies, IF Gatherings, co-teaching with my husband any chance I get, leading women’s ministry events, etc. They are shocked that I haven’t always embraced leading, teaching, and ministry life in general. My story definitely takes them by surprise. But I can promise you this, I wouldn’t be where I am today without my Ministry Wives Support Group.
...it will definitely mean being vulnerable and honest about your struggles and hang-ups as it pertains to ministry life.
I cannot express to you how valuable it is to find your ministry support group and invest in one another. It may mean that you seek out pastors’ wives from other churches in your area. And it will definitely mean being vulnerable and honest about your struggles and hang-ups as it pertains to ministry life. It will mean showing up for one another on a regular basis and asking each other the hard questions. But I can promise you this, you won’t regret it! I am forever grateful for the two years that I had with my Ministry Wives Support Group!
Sanctuary's Summer Let's Connect events are now posted via our Facebook group for June of 2019! To learn more about an opportunity to forge new connections and enrich current connections through a Let's Connect near where you live, visit Let's Connect right here at Sanctuary. Ready to take it one step further? Discover Sanctuary's Let's Retreat!
Lindsey Cunningham is a small town girl who gets a lot of strength from her deep South Carolina roots. She is the wife of a pastor and is stepping into a calling to encourage other pastors’ wives. Her three kiddos keep her on her toes and are her greatest teachers. For Lindsey there is nothing better than a house full of people and a table full of finger foods. She has a terrible green thumb, but loves the outdoors. Most mornings you can find her in her sacred blue chair with her nose in a book and her heart open to God. She has a growing passion for helping women bloom where they are planted and not shy away from the “hard and holy” things. Follow her on Instagram @confessionsofapastorswife and Facebook, and check out her connection through Open Door Sisterhood.