Thursday, October 28, 2010
I’m not sure if the same month we elevate ‘spooky’ and pastors has any connection! Typically, October is designated as ‘Pastor Appreciation Month’. I’m not sure where it began and how long it’s been around. Naturally, we as humans all like to be appreciated in some way or another now and then. Like most pastors I know, we believe we are divinely called to what we do, whether appreciated demonstratively or not. However, it does feel kinda warm and snuggly to know that what you pour your life into daily connects with somebody out there. We do what we do ultimately for the Lord and His glory, but a ‘That a boy’ now and then admittedly doesn’t hurt. We were people before we were ‘pastors’!
As I thought about ‘Pastor Appreciation Month’ 2010, I thought about the most overlooked and sometimes most undervalued and underappreciated demographic in our churches. Without this faithful group, there would be no pastor, much less a month to appreciate him in. That group I’m referring to is pastors’ wives. Clearly, without the continual love and prayers, encouragement, support and honest treasured advice from our spouses, we could never do what we do.
The Lord certainly knew what He was doing when He gave Michelle to me as my friend, wife, children’s mother, and cherished ministry partner. For years I’ve told so many, “I get the paycheck, but Chelle is the best minister in the family!” I believe that to be true even today. She not only is an amazing homeschooling mom of four, she runs our household with great efficiency, always has time for family and friends in need, juggles several ministry responsibilities at FCC seemingly effortlessly, and continues to be my greatest confidant and advisor. Over our many years together, she has proven time and time again that she is as reliable as the day is long. If there is anybody on this green garden planet who has my proverbial ‘back’, it’s my bride of almost seventeen years. She is my ‘Proverbs Thirty-One’ gal! Michelle will be the first to tell you, “I didn’t marry a preacher. I married a banker!” She’s right! However, her divine transformation from a banker’s wife in Tampa to a preacher’s wife in California has been her husband’s joy and sweetest gift, for which I will always be exceedingly grateful.
Simply put, anything appreciation-worthy this month is sweet – but must be shared. I could not do what I do without someone humbly and faithfully serving in the proverbial shadows. I know it, and I don’t acknowledge it nearly enough.
I once heard someone say, “Behind every great man is a great woman, laughing hysterically!” I’m certainly not a great man. Anything perceived as “great” is Christ in me. But one thing I do know, I have one great wife.
So, to all you amazing pastors’ wives out there, ‘Happy Pastor’s Appreciation Month!’ You’re the true heroes, and each congregation’s greatest blessings.