Sunday, February 18, 2007

Sunday Morning Tradition

I grew up in a church-going home. Not a "we all go to the same church" church-going home, mind you. But we all went. Every Sunday. Unless sick or snowed in. It was not an option.

I am thankful for that.

My dad grew up in the Catholic church, and my mom grew up a Baptist preacher's kid, now turned Methodist. So when they married, I guess they made the decision to "agree to disagree" and continued going to their own churches. (Though that is a story I've never heard--I'll have to ask about that!) I knew from early on that that was not what I wanted for my family one day, but it worked for them, and I don't think any of us are any worse off for it. At least we grew up knowing that church was where you were supposed to be on Sunday mornings.

Even when I went off to college, I don't remember very many Sundays of not being in church. College introduced me to the heartaches of "real life" very quickly, so my faith began growing roots of its own about the time that some kids begin rebelling against the religion they were raised with. So, though it took some "church hunting" to find the place I felt comfortable in to worship, I think I was in church most Sundays, even in those days.

What I didn't know during all of this was that God was molding me to be a preacher's wife--a privilege and joy that comes only after that of being a wife and a mother. At our wedding, the pastor, who is a good friend to us both, said these words to me:

"Karen, God has called you to share in a very special way in ministry, and your job is just as important as that which Mark is doing in his ministry. And the gift that God has given you--the talents, the joy, the love--will go a long way in completing his ministry and building a marriage that will be an inspiration to others..."

I very humbly took these words seriously and keep them on a notecard inside my Bible as a reminder to me of what God has called me to as a preacher's wife. Being in church every Sunday took on a new role and responsibility when I married Mark--that of encourager and cheerleader in addition to what you usually go to church for. It is a great blessing for me to sit in just the right pew so that whether he's sitting down or standing in the pulpit, I can catch his eye and give him a smile of encouragement and love.

It is because of this that I miss it even more when I can't be in church on a Sunday like today. I miss that "filling up" that we all need each week to keep our spiritual tanks full in order to get us through our week. But I also miss getting to be my husband's supporter and biggest fan--you need one of those as a preacher, you know. So I just have to know that I'm here at home this morning, rocking and doctoring sick babies, where I need to be. This is where my encouragement and love need to be today. And I know Mark understands. And I know He understands.

But I still miss being there.

(For the record, I've missed more Sundays at church since having kids than I've ever missed in my whole life!!)


Anonymous said...

I just found your blog and am happy to be able to join with you as I grow closer to my Lord.

I am a grandma of 10 who loves the Lord and I look forward to knowing you better....mama

Anonymous said...

When Mark was our young, unmarried pastor, one of the things I knew he needed was someone to go home to, someone to talk to, someone to gripe to, someone to love... a home, a wife and family. How very little we suspected at the time that God had in mind "my little girl" to fill those needs.

Blessed Beyond Measure said...

This is a good reminder to the rest of us - our pastor is someone's husband, someone's dad. We need to be better at supporting, at least I know I do. thanks for the reminder. xoxo

Blessed Beyond Measure said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kelly said...

So glad you commented when you visited by blog--so I could visit you!

I understand where you are coming from--I am a minister's wife, as well. It can be hard to balance at times.

Sandy said...

Your husband is very blessed to have you as such a support in his life. Attitude and gratitude says a lot!
Fun finding your site.