Last week someone told me that she was glad she didn’t write me off as “just another pastor’s wife”… my first response was “thank you Jesus!”
I’ve been racking my brain for over a week trying to figure out what this is all about. I want to pinpoint the “whatever it is” that creates the image of “pastor’s wife”. Because, you see, my gratitude is NOT that my friend didn’t write me off (though I am thankful for that, she is a precious friend); My gratitude is founded on the fact that I don’t want to belong to the stereotypical “pastor’s wives” club.
hmmmmm. . . . . . .
My friend later told me that “pastor’s wives” and those with similar “labels” (she called them labels, and willingly admitted that she was the one doing the labeling). . . left her feeling “unsafe”. Unsafe!
Unsafe? What is that all about?
Are we, pastor’s wives, Are we aloof? Unapproachable? Distant? Do we portray the illusion of perfection? Plastic? Syrupy Sweet? Disingenuine? Do we come across as judgmental? Condemning? Condescending? Do we gossip? Tear people down? Criticize?
What makes us, or the label of us, unsafe?
I really don’t know.
What I DO know is that as a pastor’s wife I am called to a higher plane of accountability. My dress must be modest. My speech, clean. The Sabbath held sacred in my heart. I am to tithe and to adhere to the food restrictions in Leviticus 11 (I’m even struggling with the coffee thing). My “leadership” role calls me to greater responsibility to walk in OBEDIENCE to God’s Law. I KNOW that obedience does NOT save me. Grace, and grace ALONE saves me. Yet I must walk the walk of obedience. I WANT to walk the walk of obedience…. I want, desperately want my life, my step-by-step, daily life to honour God. Pure and Holy in His sight. . . . I AM a child of the One True King. . . . take my life and let it be, consecrated Lord to thee. . . . . I want my life to show that I AM His.
But there is more to being His, than the outward “show” of accountability’ following the rules. There is the free-flowing of the richness of His mercy, His compassion, His patience, His love .. . .
. . . and it’s about “being” not “doing”.
Maybe that’s it! I just figured it out. Well, a piece of it anyway.
The RESTRICTION of obedience, the “doing” of obedience . . . that makes us unsafe . . . but the RESPONSE of obedience, flowing easily, spontaneously from a heart that loves….. that FREES us up to BE safe. Safe havens, places of comfort, places of mercy, places of compassion. . . . even places of silliness, places of laughter. Places where people can be people. . . . imperfect, mistake-making, beautiful people.
Today I had two different Kaylas tell me how they appreciated me. How I helped them. To one I was soothing comfort (thank you Jesus) during moments of tremendous fear and distress. To the other, she said I was the “person in her corner” (again thank you Jesus). . . . then she sent me a link to a song. . . . and all I can say is praise You, my God and Father, and You, Sweet Jesus, Lover of my Soul and You, Comforting Holy Spirit who lives in me…. because ALL I want to be, all I want to do is
Love them like You do… (take a minute & listen to the song)