My husband and I have served in some sort of ministry for the majority of our lives together, be it lay service or staff service. God has placed a definite calling on our lives and our family, and we would have it no other way. Our lives and gifts belong to our Heavenly Father, and service to Him is an honor.
However, we have both continually struggled with loneliness. Not in a marriage way, but in friendships. I’ve always been dumbfounded by this. We meet people we have lots in common with, begin to develop a friendship but then, out of the blue it seems, it just seems to dissolve.
I’m very thankful to God for the friends we found during our seminary experience. They may be distant, but we know we can count on them to pray for us! Unfortunately not all ministers have this experience to build upon.
But, that’s not really why I started this post. God has been working STRONGLY in my heart lately. He has grown a GREAT compassion for people in ministry within me. My heart breaks a little bit every single time I talk with a ministry wife and am told by them that they don’t really have any close friends. They have no close connections with other ministry wives. They don’t feel that they can be truly themselves with anyone. See where I’m going? Praying and talking with my husband, I know that ministers feel the same way their wives feel.
Something isn’t right about that.
True we have to live guarded lives, Satan prowls around for ANY way he can destroy the ministry of one of God’s chosen workers. But, can’t we support each other, pray for each other??
So many churches seem to view the other as competition. Oh, but it isn’t!!! It’s about leading people to Jesus!!!
Can you imagine the image shift that churches would make in society if the ministry leaders banded together, supported each other, loved each other, befriended each other, and went out into the world as comrades?
Is there an easy solution? No. I know that.
But, if you are reading this, and you are a minister or ministry wife, please know this: YOU ARE NOT ALONE! There are so many others just like you, feeling the same way you feel. Pray for them.
There are ways to connect with them. Seek them out. Ladies, one of my favorites is Contagious Joy 4 Him. Go join with other ministry wives & be encouraged! Men, if any of you know a way for pastors or ministers to connect, please share in the comments.
Pray, pray, pray, & pray some more for the ministry leaders in your lives. Pray that God will send them true friendships! Encourage them!
Father, I pray today for your workers. I pray that you would send each of them true friendships built around a mutual love for You and your people. Men and women that they can trust to be themselves around. Free of judgement and gossip. Remove all fear of competition from between fellow workers. Fill them with Your love and encouragement. Most of all, Abba, in the waiting, draw them into Your arms and relieve their loneliness! – Amen