Monthly Archives: May 2014

Why Ministry is the Best Gig in the World – Reason 2, Purpose!

My sweet Grandma Kay, who I am named for, will be 90 years old this September!  Can you even imagine the change she has seen in 90 years?  When she was a little girl, growing up in Ohio, they didn’t have indoor plumbing.  To this day she blames her bladder problems on the cows that lived in the field by the outhouse.  Their mooing scared her when she had to go out there in the dark.  Poor Grammy!

She has seen change in plumbing; change in food preparation; change in electronics; on and on the list goes.  One of the changes that have been most difficult for her, however, has been the change in her daily schedule.  My Grandma has always been a go-getter!  She worked for many years as a secretary, taking shorthand and typing on a typewriter.  Then after she was done working, she was always on the go – taking care of others and volunteering her time at church, the hospital and other places as well.  A few years ago, dementia set in and has caused her to have a much different lifestyle than what she was used to her whole life.  I think one of the things she struggles with the most is purpose.  She isn’t contributing like she used to.  Instead of being the one taking care of everybody, everybody is taking care of her (although she has been known to use this to her advantage from time-to-time!)  She may have dementia, but she’s no dummy -smile-!

Have you ever been in a season where you lacked purpose?  An illness, job loss, or other life circumstance has left you floundering, waking up wondering how you were going to fill your day.  It’s not a very good feeling, is it?

I am currently in a season where I am waking up not wondering what I am going to do with my day, but wondering how I am going to get everything done I need to this day.  Yet, if I had to choose between the two, I much rather choose a day wondering how I am going to get it all done instead of having nothing to do.  It is a good/God feeling to wake up with purpose.  God designed us to fulfill a purpose and if you are serving Jesus, you will always have purpose, no matter if your day is full of chaos or full of silence.  The good news for my Grandma is that even though her purpose has changed, the fact remains that she still has purpose.  Otherwise, she would no longer be on this earth.  If you are in a season where it seems you have little purpose, your purpose is to press in to Jesus like never before.  If you are in a season where you have a lot of purpose (AKA a long to-do list), your purpose is to rely on God’s strength to see you through.

Serving in ministry = purpose.  Sometimes, all it takes is a little change in perspective to see that ministry truly is THE BEST gig in the world!

Your Friend in Ministry,

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Get Some Prayer Support

On Being a Pastor’s Wife

This is post number four on the five most important things I can share with a new pastor’s wife.  (To read all of the posts, go to the “On Being a Pastor’s Wife” category on the sidebar.)  Here’s what I shared in the first three:

  • Figure Out Your Role – passion + gifting = calling
  • Support Your Pastor-Husband – pastors need support too!
  • Work Hard to be Healthy – spiritually, emotionally and physically

Number four is “Get Some Prayer Support”.  One of the blessings of being married to a pastor is that people often come to you with their prayer requests.  I consider it a high honor and privilege that regularly throughout the week people ask me to pray for their needs.  Praying for someone is one of the best ways to serve them!  Through the years, I have prayed for marriages, for financial provision, for health, for strength, for reconciliation, etc. . .   I have seen with my own eyes some pretty amazing answers to prayer, thank You Jesus!

Several years back, I had someone ask me (with all sincerity), “Who prays for you and your family?”  At that point, I didn’t have a very good response.  Sure, I knew that people prayed for us, but I was not being intentional about enlisting a prayer team to pray for our specific needs.  This dear sister gave me a word of admonishment and strongly advised me to get some prayer support.  She had learned what I knew, but hadn’t taken seriously; there is unique spiritual warfare that takes place in the heavenly realms regarding pastors and their families.  The enemy works overtime to dissuade, discourage and defeat those who serve as pastors.  I was putting our family somewhat at risk by not enlisting a team who would cover us in prayer.

Today, if someone were to ask who prays for me and my family, I’d have a better answer.  I have worked hard at being vulnerable and having the humility it takes to ask for prayer.  God has blessed my efforts and I now have a team of family and friends who regularly prays for our family.

Let me offer some suggestions of how you can build a team of prayer support:

  • Godly moms are among the best prayer support you can get because there is nothing quite like a mom’s prayer for her kids.  Does your extended family know enough about what is going on in your life so that they know how to pray for you?
  • A prayer partner is someone you meet with on a regular basis to exchange requests and pray for each other’s needs both while you are meeting together and then throughout the week as well.
  • Find women who have a strong relationship with Christ, are reliable, trustworthy and are led to be a support to you.  Then call upon them as often as needed, especially when you sense that you are under some spiritual attack or have a situation going on (family or ministry related) that requires special wisdom and guidance from the Lord.

There is a degree of risk involved with being vulnerable and humble before others.  You may be misunderstood or misinterpreted.  People will see your weaknesses.  The enemy knows this and that’s why he tries to get us to muddle through life and ministry on our own.  I speak from experience, the reward of having others pray for you far outweigh the risk of vulnerability.

Prayer support gives you strength when you feel like you can’t go on.  It protects you in ways you may never know this side of heaven.  Allowing others to pray for you lets them be a partner in the ministry God is doing through you.  Prayer support gives you peace, hope and joy as you faithfully serve Jesus.  It also gives you wisdom beyond your years and experience.  Prayer covering allows you to be successful in ministry!

So let me ask you, just like I was asked many years ago, who is praying for you and your family?

Your Friend in Ministry,

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Why Ministry is the Best Gig in the World – Reason 1, Old Ranchers & Prayer Warriors

Last night as I sat and listened to the conversation about bulls, electric fences and processing calves, that familiar feeling washed over me, a sense of gratitude to God for the privilege of being in the ministry.  Sure, ministry can be challenging and there are a lot of demands, but for a “people-person” like me, I found myself relishing the conversation going on in front of me.

I was visiting a small group made up of older folks, most of which had lived in the area all of their life.  We live in a rural small town and many in our congregation live out in the country.  Therefore, I have received a “country education” about raising cattle and goats, gardening, canning, etc… I love to listen and learn bits and pieces of country livin’.  If it were up to my 15 year old daughter, we would live on many acres and have horses – lots and lots of horses.  (Until she got her pretty cowgirl boots dirty from shoveling manure!)

After the rest of the small group arrived, this same old rancher, sat down and led the Bible Study.  He taught out of the King James Version of the Bible and proceeded to give a lesson that moved me to tears.  Two things became very clear to me, #1 – this old rancher knew his Bible and #2 – he loved God.  His occupation is ranching, but his passion is teaching others to follow Christ and obey His Word.

At the end of the teaching, it was prayer time.  He reminded the eighteen people there (all of whom were older than me and most of whom could be my parents!) to keep my husband and I and our kids in prayer.  He explained that we need it and that the prayers of the congregation make a huge difference in the lives of the leaders.  (To which I said a hearty, albeit silent, “Amen!”  He had no way of knowing that it had been a rough afternoon and I had blown it with my kids right before I left home to come “encourage” this small group.)

I was amazed by the responses of individuals who shared that they regularly pray for us.  One elderly couple said that we were on their DAILY prayer list, another couple said they keep our Christmas picture on their fridge year round so that they can remember to pray for us.  I left my time with these precious people humbled both that they pray for us and that I was able to rub shoulders with them for an evening.  Because we don’t run in the same circles, If I didn’t serve in the capacity I do, I would not have the opportunity to sit among these “seasoned saints”, AKA old ranchers and prayer warriors, and be blessed by their faithfulness and love.

Sometimes all it takes is a little perspective shift to see that ministry truly is THE BEST gig in the world!

Your Friend in Ministry,

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