Every Tuesday, our leadership staff gets together for our weekly meeting and discusses the upcoming events, brainstorm regarding the advancement of ministry, pray for God’s power upon our church, and rejoice in the blessings God has bestowed upon His children. Where some might fear weekly meetings, I frankly enjoy the time I spend with the godly men I labor with. I praise God for the privilege of serving at Desert Gateway Baptist Church!
During a meeting recently, one of the men announced, “Wow! It’s going to be a busy February!” To which another responded, “It was a busy January and it’s going to be a busy March.” Pastor laughed and said, “When are we ever not busy? Who put together this calendar?” We all chuckled and were at the same time thankful for the ministry opportunities.
In the busyness of ministry, we must not be careless regarding our marriages. It so easy to excuse a bad mood or unkept commitments because of the demands of ministry. We must remember that our first ministry is to our spouse. Yes, even before our children and even before our church, humanly speaking, our spouse comes first.
I was reminded of this truth these past few weeks because it has been a very busy time in ministry. Over and over again, I rehearsed a lesson I learned a long time ago, “God given duties never conflict.” My wife, my child, my ministry can work seamlessly together because each one was given to me by God and He did not expect for these different gifts to battle for my attention! If anything, God has allowed each to compliment and enhance the other. Aren’t you glad we serve a God Who is all-knowing and all-loving?
As I served alongside my wife and daughter these past few weeks, biblical lessons modeled by mentors came back to mind. These lessons have helped keep my marriage in ministry, as God had intended. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that marriage and ministry cannot work together. It has to work together because to be married and not serve is an obvious violation of scriptural Christian living.
I tend to compartmentalize my life. By doing so, I justify the fact that what happens at the office stays there so that I can fully focus on my family. Unfortunately when I get home, my wife wants me to talk about what happened. As she sees me get busier, her God-given duty kicks in by being a help-meet! She jumps into action and assists me in my ministry. She doesn’t mind having to do the dishes or the laundry later. She just wants to help me!
Then the project is done. I’m thankful that my wife came to help. I can rest now, right? Wrong! Remember the dishes and the laundry? May I encourage you to set aside your pride to help your wife? If she’s going to enjoy helping me in ministry, I need to be a help to her, too.
To honor someone simply means to respect, to give credit, to favor, and to recognize. Our wives need our affection. You may think it’s corny or old-fashioned but what about writing her a note? Buying her flowers? Giving her a foot massage? Taking her out on a date? Too often we’ve taken to social networking sites to express our appreciation but what about face-to-face? I’m glad your 20 Twitter followers and 500 FaceBook pseudo friends know you love her, but have you told her and shown her in person? It’s so easy to miss honoring your spouse.
Be A Ham
Have you noticed that as human beings we love to focus on the negative? Determine now that date nights won’t be overshadowed with foolish talking or gossiping about others. Spend the time instead praising God for what He’s done in your lives and laughing about the good times He’s given. Stay positive! I know it may hurt your pride to laugh at yourself but it’s okay because pride is sin anyway.
I am so thankful for the gift of marriage. I praise God daily for my wife and the help she’s been to me personally and in ministry. I tell her often (though not often enough) that I cannot picture my life in ministry without her. She is truly a gift of God to me. But I can’t put it in “auto-pilot.” I can’t just assume it’s going to all take care of itself. I have a duty to be helpful, be honoring, and at times, to be ham, too!