PW for DUMMIES 101

As I gleaned over my archives today, trying to make room AGAIN to avoid an inevitable upgrade charge, I came across this draft and it seemed logical to post it since the other PW entries were popular. It’s about ordinary pastors’ wives like me, normal chicks, swimming in their shark tanks, trying to be a blessing despite being cursed often. I drafted this short entry in November, so a lot has happened since that time. But, the advice I was dishing out then, I NOW give with firmer conviction.

One of my closest friends is another pastor’s wife who visited my blog several months back. Since that time, we text or email daily just to check on each other and offer encouragement. We also do a little “venting” every now and again too. Our relationship shows me everyday how important it is for pastors’ wives to have a support system. We’ve even talked about partnering together to host a retreat in the fall-for EVERYDAY PW’s like us. If you’re a pastor’s wife, stay tuned for location and dates.

Here’s a preview of the things I’m putting together for that weekend. All practical material-things that make our journey a lot easier.

When you are dealing with a difficult person or delicate situation:  Solicit advice from OUR FATHER before you ask for anyone else’s advice. See, I want to help any of my sisters and I know that you feel the same way..but- we’re assigned to different battle stations, or I should say tanks.

I have PW gal-pals in Kenya, Kentucky, Texas, Ohio, Singapore, Pennsylvania, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Washington, New York, Louisiana, Georgia, Missouri, Philippines, Argentina, Arkansas, Mississippi, Australia, Costa Rica, China, Korea, Florida, Bahamas, Mexico, Canada, Greece, Italy, Guatemala, Honduras, England, Scotland. You’re following my direction..what works with Swahilis probably isn’t going to work with Cajuns. SEEK GOD’S direction first and foremost-but-if you need someone to discuss tactical maneuvers with, you’re safer listening to us who wear the same brand shoes that you do!

Don’t berate yourselves for too long over nasty feelings..we all have them periodically. You’ll have it up to there many times along the way-we aren’t perfect even though THEY seem to think that we should be. Do your best to control your actions and tongue. But, understand, you’ll wish you hadn’t done or said this or that.  Ask for FORGIVENESS, then move on. Side note; if the one you offend is set on holding a grudge, don’t be manipulated by guilt. Some church folks like to hold transgressions over our heads. DO NOT fall in that pit. Dust your shoes off and WALK AWAY.

You’re not BAD because you get MAD. Let me tell you something, if our husbands spoke to another man’s wife or kids the way that we GET spoken to sometimes-it wouldn’t fly. It amazes me how often someone complains to my husband about what another man has done to his wife-but, that same man has NO PROBLEM speaking to me in a derogatory manner. They don’t just let it go whenever their wife is wronged-but, I’ve seen men get fighting mad with my Chipper because he came to my defense. It’s really quite sad how men who I genuinely consider to be good men-don’t understand that basic principle.

Our husbands are put in a predicament when it comes to shielding our feelings and since ol’ lucifer is out to destroy the KINGDOM, it is his primary goal is to render the CHURCH useless. When he succeeds in destroying another church, he does a happy dance.

See, our church isn’t the building where we go to WORSHIP (even though I know a heck of A LOT of  building worshipers)- it’s THE PEOPLE who meet in them. Putting out wife bait is a powerful, highly enticing scent. It’s clever, I’ll give him that. It draws the sharks closer and it pulls the pastor out into the water. IF ONLY more CHRISTIANS took time to study lucifer’s sneaky game plans!

NEXT thing you need to know..You’re not unworthy of your calling because your thoughts weren’t PURE when Brother FEEL ME UP extended an invasive hug under the brotherly hug canopy. INCESTUOUS hugs are not acceptable! You have the right to decline his or her (oh, yeah…I’ve had the overly friendly female squeeze, too!) show of affection, if it makes you uncomfortable. We all  have a few of those in our fellowship-and for some reason, their wives usually assume that we’re soliciting the attention…hmm…I’ll leave that one right there.

Here’s a good one! You’re not the only pastor’s wife who grows weary of the endless well doing. I assure you, we ALL get tired of being the default mode for positions that are vacated…from the 8am nursery worker who calls in sick at 7:55 to the last minute chaperone replacement for summer camp.

Oh and you should learn this early because..that’s just the way it is.  Everyone but us, is excused for having other plans.  Honey’s sister in law’s cousin, won a radio contest for a spa getaway and she invited me to go.  It would ruin my testimony if I turned her down. Sista, here’s the COLD, HARD, TRUTH…that kind of  emergency situation does NOT apply to us.

BUT, the good news is..we have some pioneers trail blazing on our behalf. Just wait until you meet some of my friends like Kim and Karen. They helped me gain the courage to just say no and it’s one of the best things that I’ve ever done for me, for my marriage and my home!

We all need to air our frustrations sometimes-but our husbands shouldn’t always be the ones to hear it.  Remember, he has to look at those people and preach weekly.  There’s a balance in what you talk about with him and what you don’t.  But the most important key to your success, venting SHOULD NEVER be around somebody in your church. I learned that from my own mother. Sure, I’ve gone stupid a few times and done what I knew NOT to..9 times out of 10- it came back to CHOMP me in the butt!

I talk to my Mama, Jena or Hannah, 26 years bff, Liz, one of my sisters, sister in law, Ginny, pastors’ wives friends that I’ve been blessed to know and trust and a small-but VERY close circle of NON pastor’s wives who I confide in now that I’m NOT their pastor’s wife. Choose listening ears carefully! THERE ARE TIMES when my one of my loyal doggies are the best for me to confide in. It’s so corny, but, I have cried on Bindi’s Sue’s shoulder many times and my precious tiny Desi laps up tears as quickly as I shed them.

No, sweet sister, you are NOT the church doormat where everybody scrapes the poo off their shoes! 😀 I’m praying for you and I’m hoping that you’re praying for me. Even with all of the challenges, I think we wear the best BRAND of shoes out there and I wouldn’t trade mine with anybody else.

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