God called me to serve the gospel cause as a pastor’s wife, not because my mother was a pastor’s wife but because it was God’s design. Although the leading of the Holy Spirit is most important, I also pay tribute to my dear parents. My dad has died, but my mom is still alive and continues to counsel me.
Four decades ago I was born to parents who were already Adventists. Four years later they entered full-time ministry, where they remained until 1993 when my dad died of cancer at the age of 58.
My husband and I have now completed two decades in ministry. My successes are due in part to my parents’ training and counsel as God-fearing people.
As a pastor’s wife, here are six areas I would like to highlight:
TIME-CONSCIOUSNESS AND REGULAR DEVOTIONS
Every Christian knows that time is precious. I believe that God Himself believes time is very important. One area where I score high marks is in connection with time-keeping, especially during my mornings. We get up at 6:00 a.m. and begin our devotions. Time and again in this article I will be mentioning the legacies of my parents’ training and counsel. Time consciousness and a regular devotional hour are two of them. Yes, I even lead my husband in waking up because it is in my blood.
CLEANLINESS AND ORDERLINESS
I always associate cleanliness with a life free from sin. For this reason, I always see to it that our house, clothes, compound, and many other aspects connected with cleanliness are kept well. This is what my parents did. Cleanliness is deeply rooted in the teachings of the Bible.
As for orderliness, I used to observe my dad’s way of planting crops. He made sure that he planted in lines and rows for two reasons: (1) to maintain orderliness, and (2) so it would be easy when it came time to take away the amount for tithe.
THE SPIRIT OF GIVING AND HOSPITALITY
Sometimes my husband complains because of my desire to always give. Well, I have learned that the more I give, the more the Lord gives me to give away. Is this not the secret of prosperity? I hope so. This legacy is from my mother; she is still that way.
I will never forget that the time when 12 people stormed our parsonage. They belonged to a different tribe and had come to spend the night with us because of an emergency. My parents did all they could to provide our unexpected guests with supper and space for sleeping. This was not the only occasion when I observed such hospitality from my parents. Now I try to follow their example whenever possible.
When my husband was a sophomore in college, I was employed as the girls’ dean. He used to say to me, “You are a leader.” It was not easy to deal with over 200 girls from all sorts of backgrounds, but I was the girls’ dean for three years and experienced only minor challenges.
Time and again I find myself taking over some of my husband’s duties when his itinerary takes him away from home. When church members need his help when he is away, they sometimes come to me. I recently sat on a certain committee, and a contentious issue came up. It dawned on me that referring to the Church Manual was the only solution. I brought it to the meeting, and the tensions subsided. As pastors’ wives, we can handle some issues when our husband’s are away. However, we ought to consider these issues prayerfully.
Not only must we take over some of our husbands’ roles when they are away, we must also assist them when they are present. My husband always remarks before congregations that “where I fail or I am weak, my wife excels, and where she is weak, I excel.” I am always very particular about the way he dresses. On many occasions, when I observe that his way of dressing needs correction, I encourage him to wear something else. He often takes my advice. My mother used to do the same thing with my father.
PRAYERS OF MY PARENTS
My parents were strong supplicants. My husband always remarks that people love and feel comfortable with me. Perhaps it is God’s way of answering my parents’ prayer: “Give our children love and several friends.”
HARD WORK AND CAREFUL PLANNING
A local adage says, “Work hard and eat like a cow.” The idea behind this saying is that our African cattle spend the whole day grazing. Hence, hard work yields what one can eat and drink. Without the presence of a resource, there is only yawning. For this reason, I find it fitting that I have to work hard in the gospel cause, in my garden, and in other areas.
In some African Unions (mine, for example), a field treasurer’s salary is never enough. To make ends meet, most of us do side jobs like baking bread, raising chickens, and a host of other activities. I am not trying to advocate for moonlighting; I am just saying that a pastor’s wife has to work hard in all areas.
Yes, as a pastor’s wife I have come this far because of the Holy Spirit’s leading and because my dear parents, who served the same cause, instilled in me worthwhile values.