Wednesday, October 16, 2013

10 Ways Marrying a Pastor Will Change Your Life…

I recently read a blog entitled, “10 Ways Marrying a Farmer Will Change Your Life…” and as the daughter of a farmer, it certainly gave me greater appreciation for my parents!

But I also got to thinking that being married to a pastor (which I am, otherwise this blog post would be kinda pointless) will change your life, too. Just mulling it over one evening as I did the dishes while my pastor-husband was away at a church board meeting, I thought of several ways my life has been shaped by who I married. So just for the fun of it, here’s my own list:

10 Ways Marrying a Pastor Will Change Your Life…

10. You will probably be the only person in church who reads the bulletin religiously because if you don’t take initiative to find out what is going on, you won’t have a clue because your husband won’t remember to tell you. He spends all day talking about it at work that he will assume he’s mentioned it to you.

9. On that note, you must always be ready to fill in for the volunteer that doesn’t show up. I have filled many a last-minute role to cover everything from the nursery to the coffee counter.

8. You can plan for him to be home for dinner, but don’t be surprised when he’s not. He may call and say, “I’m walking out of my office right now,” only to take an hour to make the normally three-minute trip home because someone caught him before he could walk out of the building.

7. Get used to Satan showing up at your house on Sunday mornings just about the time your husband leaves for work - typically before the rest of the family even wakes. He loves to make sure your kids turn into complete hooligans so that you lose your cool and are screaming at them the entire trip to church. You’ll spend the first 15 minutes of church begging God for forgiveness for your impatience and anger. I can almost guarantee it.

6. You will receive random gifts of appreciation in the form of food. Bread, zucchini, hot dishes – one church even offered to supplement his meager salary with a side of beef. But you will learn to be grateful for even small acts of kindness because of #5.

5. You will develop a thick skin. There will no doubt be times when you will fight the urge to punch a critical parishioner in the teeth in defense of your man. While you know he’s far from perfect, you also know he works hard, loves what he does, and does not take the job lightly – he has a calling. You will struggle with people who do not honor that.

4. You will get used to living in a fishbowl. You will know that eyes are always on you, and sometimes you will act like it and other times you just won’t care – like when your child is throwing a tantrum in the church foyer and you drag him away, kicking and screaming.

3. At that point, you will find it very handy that your husband has an office at the church. My children may or may not have spent some time-outs in it. While most families may skip church completely if the morning has gone sour, you will power through it because you never miss a Sunday.

2. If he’s out until 2:00am, it isn’t because he’s living it up with his buddies. It’s more likely he’s consoling a grieving family who just lost a loved one. My husband was even pulled away from Thanksgiving dinner once to rush to someone’s bed side. But even though you will want him home, you will understand that God needs him there.

1. You will never understand how someone can go through life without a relationship with Jesus because you’re reminded daily of how desperately people need grace and peace.We love our church family and community, and we hurt when they hurt. But in all things, God really is good.

While I was told before saying “I do”  that marrying a pastor wouldn’t come without some sacrifices, 20 years later I can say with confidence that I had no idea what I was walking into – but I am glad I’ve made the journey with this man. We’ve plodded through the valleys, but also rejoiced at the mountaintops together. While the road hasn’t always been smooth, we’ve held on tight to our commitment to each other because of our commitment to the One who brought us together.

It may have been by chance that I married a pastor. But it was no accident that I married this pastor. I love him and will have his place set at the table tonight…just in case he makes it home on time.