How does a pastor’s wife care for her husband when he is attacked?

There is one place more difficult than being a criticized pastor—that is, that pastor’s wife.  I assume most men are like me in that you can attack me, but if you attack my wife—well it’s on!  The fact of the matter is this attitude usually represents our wives feelings about those who attack us also.  Yet, a pastor’s wife cannot fight back.  It almost always ends badly or makes the situation worse.  At least when we as pastors are attacked or criticized by those in the church, we have the option to defend ourselves.  We can fight back.  We can argue our case.  In most cases, it is a “lose-lose” battle any time a pastor’s wife embraces the task to defend her husband.  Therefore, what is she to do?  Here are 3 suggestions:

Pray

Pray for your husband that the Lord would give him grace.  Pray for those attackers that God would give them a spirit of grace and love for their pastor, and convict them where they are wrong.  Pray for yourself, that you would not grow bitter, but to realize sheep sometimes attack their shepherd.  Pray those New Testament passages about suffering for if the Christian is called to suffer for Christ’s sake, why not the shepherd of them even more?

Speak wisely

Be a trusted, discerning voice for your husband.  Help him with great wisdom see where the critical comments are mean-spirited and just not true, and where there might be some merit to the criticisms.  Some of my most painful, but good growing pains as a pastor were sifting through harsh comments that I later realized (often with my wife’s help) had a grain of truth to them.

Support unconditionally

Do whatever you must to remind your husband of your love for him, your affirmation of his calling, and the gifts the Lord has given him.  If you can convince your husband of your unwavering love and support, you will have a better chance to do the previous one (speak wisely).

Press on, dear ladies.  You play a most important role in your husband’s life and ministry.  Remember the Lord is good, Christ is sweet in difficulty, and any injustice that remains that is done to you or your husband will be dealt with by the great Judge and Chief Shepherd of the universe.

Posted in Home and Family
3 comments on “How does a pastor’s wife care for her husband when he is attacked?
  1. Suzanne says:

    Thanks for some good, straightforward counsel for us wives. Most of us would rather be criticized ourselves than to hear our husbands attacked. I appreciate your ministry — and your supportive wife!

  2. K says:

    This is an important issue, but not the most serious one. Sometimes the pastor’s wife is attacked, for the purpose of destroying the marriage and thus get rid of the pastor. Pastors need a lot of backbone to deal with that one. Very few meet that challenge.

  3. Christa says:

    After communion one Sunday I felt compelled to confront one of our elder’s wives behind me. I told her so and she replied, “Oh, I’m not mad at you, just your husband.” My response: “We’re one flesh. It’s all the same.” At that she replied: “Well then I’m a B—-!” and ran out of the sanctuary. I ran after her to no avail. Several years later that family finally left. It was what my friend in ministry calls a “blessed subtraction.”

5 Pings/Trackbacks for "How does a pastor’s wife care for her husband when he is attacked?"
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