Last week, I addressed how a pastor should respond when he is complimented about his sermon. As promised, here is how a pastor’s wife can deal with those same compliments about her husband’s sermon. Like any wise pastor about a question as this, I asked my wife how she would answer. My wife said when faced with this challenge, she often replies with, “Uh? You really thought it was that good?” Trust me, her sarcasm comes off charming and witty in person. Post-sarcasm, she offered a few other suggestions on how a pastor’s wife can respond in a God honoring way in those moments:
1) Say thank you. The pastor’s wife is no different from the pastor in this regard. If someone has taken time to encourage you by speaking of your husband’s ministry of the word, be grateful and just say thank you.
2) Acknowledge you will pass the word to your husband. As much as that person is trying to encourage you by speaking well of your husband, it can still be awkward being praised for something, someone else did. The best way to cut through the awkwardness is to simply acknowledge it for what it is. They are wanting to affirm your husband through you as his wife. Because of this, a good and helpful reply can be, “Thank you, I will pass your encouraging words along to my husband.”
3) Be encouraged by your role in his ministry. So much of what the pastor does is possible only because there is a faithful wife and mother tending to the family’s needs so he can focus on ministry week in and week out. Pastor’s wives, although you are not the one preaching, you play a key, unique role in the preacher’s life that allows him to preach. You play a major role in a faithful, well-preached sermon. Allow yourself to be personally encouraged when an encouraging word for your husband comes through you.
Pastor’s wives, this awkward word to your husband is coming if you have not already experienced it. Prepare for it. Embrace it. It should encourage you personally and equip you to be yet another source of encouragement for your husband as you share it with him during Sunday lunch.