I’ve had today’s blog on my heart for a while now. I’ve hesitated to post about it because I’m not now nor have I ever been a pastors wife. However, I have served in several aspects of ministry. Children ministries, women ministries, lead single moms ministry and lead numerous small groups. So I’ve had my fair share of ministerial experience when it comes to women asking questions, confiding in, seeking counsel, as well as being available to them. I’ve dealt with small groups of two or three and groups ofn almost too numerous to count. I’ve been out of any ministerial roles other than within the walls of my own home for a couple of years now and the one things that bothers me to the core over the years is the lack of not only sympathy, empathy or concern but the lack of confidentiality and willingness to help direct and educate when these women desiring to grow in Christ. Instead, most times they judged, ridiculed and my favorites are to eh… Just read the Bible and pray or even better to google their questions. What? I’m seriously overwhelmingly amazed as these experienced women of God and their selfishness. No, I’m not saying all women in ministry or pastors wives are this way. Because, I have also encountered some phenemonal and genuinely wonderful ladies desiring to encourage and help other women fulfill their destiny in Christ.
I’ve never been to seminary. I’ve never taken theology classes. I’ve never been a pastors wife. The only ordination I hold is a license to as my dad would say is to marry and bury. My experience is serving within several different denominations. Such as Baptist, Christian, Apostolic, and non-denominational. I did grow up a Apostilic pastors kid, but wasn’t shown why we believe and practiced what we did, we were only told to do it. Which led to a life of confusion and a grown-up looking for God and what she believed, in every church, denomination, translation of Bible and even in bars and various toxic marriages. And, with the lack of guidance from wise older Christian women, I stayed in that cycle for years. Was is totally their fault, no because as an adult there comes a time we do have to take responsibility for us. But, man if someone would had been constant and willing to lead, mentor or just teach.
I actually had a pastors wife counsel my teen daughter after suffering sexual abuse from a trusted individual, then without my daughters or my permission shared her story with another teen in our church. Then when getting backlash after the other teen announced to the church and my daughters fellow high schoolers while in a fit of anger deatails of what my daughter had endured. This pastors wife called me asking how she was to get out of the mess she was in. When I informed her it was her mess and I was hurt and angry as well she then complained to her husband our pastor, who informed me, I had a bad spirit and need it corrected.
I also had a pastors wife re-style my daughters hair before most church services, bakesales, and fewlloship meetings because what I or they had done wasn’t enough.
Then there was a pastors wife who required me as a single mom in government assistance use ten percent of my SNAP benefits (food stamps) for their household because it was “biblical” to give of the first fruits. Let me point out this was also illegal. The same pastor’s wife informed me since I was single my pastor, her husband was to act like my husband and in all decision making for my household.
Most recently I had a pastors wife whom I respected to tell me after sending her a private message asking questions, only scriptural reference to help me understand regarding dress, to just read the Bible. She also instructed someone seeking scriptural advice to google her questions then openly tell others via social media the two women asking questions were not even believers.
I’m not telling you these stories to speak ill of anyone, which is why names and churches were left out. I am only telling you as examples so you’ll have a better understanding of where I am coming from. *this is not my current church*
I can’t help but think in all the years of searching and struggling what could have happened if i would have had women willing to invest in me. Guide me, offer advice, point me in any direction scripturally.
Let’s face it, the Bible is confusing. The way in which it was written is as if we are reading Shakespear is hard to understand and digest. However, I do know In Titus 2:3-5, we are instructed:
The aged women
Titus 2:3-5 is not simply a suggestion for older and younger women. This instruction is critical to our walk with Christ. It is a part of the strategy for the church to disciple and train-up believers.
This mandate in Titus was given to the head of the local church. Paul instructed Titus to equip older women in the congregation for the ministry of training, encouraging and equipping younger women. This discipleship is to occur with sound doctrine and under the church’s authority. It is, at its core, an instruction manual on discipleship.
While this teaching is clear that a Titus two relationship is a responsibility of and has oversight by the church. However, it is our responsibility to identify and build those Titus two relationships on our own. If a woman approaches you in any way asking for direction, encouragement and scriptural basis for beliefs be ready, be willing. According to 1 Peter 3:15 it says “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” What does this mean? Well for starters Sanctify means: sanc·ti·fy /ˈsaNG(k)təˌfī/ Learn to pronounce verb set apart as or declare holy; consecrate. “a small shrine was built to sanctify the site” synonyms: consecrate, make holy, make sacred, bless, hallow, set apart, dedicate to God, anoint, ordain, canonize, beatify.
So, if someone approaches you and asks for scriptural reference on why you dress, acts, styles your hair, choose not to attend certain events, observe different holidays or maybe even speak the way you do, to be ready to give reason/direction as to why. Struggling Titus two women who are searching to find your way, take these steps: The Christian women who hurt you, betrayed you or failed to help teach you, you are instructed to forgive them seven times seventy, so FORGIVE. They are not perfect and neither are we. Then you study hard, find a mentor/older woman who is willing to step up and be that Titus two woman and help you discover and be the woman God has called you to be. Last but not least pray, pray hard for the women who hurt you, for direction and a mentor.
For the other women out there, especially Pastor’s wives, I know you are busy. I know you have a BIG job. Your calling requires so much of you, but, know your biggest influence on the next generation of women who desire to live a life according to Gods calling is the time, direction and mentorship you invest in them. You are never to busy for their eternal salvation and if you are that busy, find someone who has the time. For the love of all things holy do NOT ever disregard them.
My blog post today is not intended to point a finger and pick at anyone. I am only hoping to bring much-needed awareness to a big problem in churches. Therefore, if you have been hurt this is your sign to begin healing. If you are the one who has intentionally or unintentionally hurt someone here is your sign to start over, repent, begin anew and become that Titus two woman you were designed to be.
Blessings, Hollie McCalip