A few months back, as I watched my husband crumble under the incredible weight of public pressure, I wrote something called, Pastors Are People Too!
Today I am the one crumbling. I am the preacher’s wife.
I am the mother of six. I am the prayer group leader. I am the children’s teacher and the women’s teacher. I am the mentor, confidant and spiritual counselor.
And I want to let you into a glimpse of my heart. I don’t want your pity. But I also don’t want the pressure of unrealistic standards that you hold me to. I don’t want to give up my calling, but I also don’t want your expectations of my calling to usurp God’s. I want you to unload your heavy hearts to me, but I want you to know I can’t fix it. I don’t want preferential treatment. But I beg for your understanding.
I am a bible student. I am not an expert on theology. I am your fellow-laborer. I am not a representative of church policy. I am a servant. I am not a decision maker. I am a friend. I am not a go-between. I am a listener. I am not a problem-solver.
Please remember this: “The Bible has no job description called ‘pastor’s wife.’ The pastor’s wife is simply to be a Christian church member like everyone else” (Mark Driscoll, Loving the Pastor’s Wife). I need you to see that. I need you to see that I have no official title nor do I hold a church office.
I need you to see that I am not perfect, yet I carry the weight of the stereotypical image of being the perfect wife, the perfect mother and just generally the perfect woman. My marriage isn’t perfect. My kids aren’t perfect. I don’t keep a perfect house. Frankly, I can’t breathe under the weight of a perfection that I cannot obtain.
I am not perfect. I am a fallible human being… no… actually that doesn’t touch what I am. I am simply a sinner. So please don’t expect anything more from me than that. I am a sinner, just like you, who desperately needs grace.
I will blunder. I will fall. I will let you down. I will make mistakes. But know this, I don’t want to. The problem is, I am a sinner. Please remember that when you expect perfection. Please remember that when you expect me to fix your problem, deal with your conflict, or to be perpetually smiling. I am just a sinner.
“I do not treat the grace of God as meaningless. For if keeping the law could make us right with God, then there was no need for Christ to die.” –Paul the Apostle