She is not appointed but expected to serve, rarely mentioned but ever present. I speak, of course, of the minister’s wife. In normal circumstances the congregation usually sees her as an adjunct to her husband’s ministry – but preachers’ wives provide elements not usually seen or understood by those who have not been there themselves:
1. She Bears Burdens
All of us should bear each others’ burdens (Galatians 6:2) and the preacher usually has a greater share because of his work. For this he receives his livelihood and the appreciation of the brethren. Few people realize, however, that the preacher’s ability to carry the burdens of others is proportional to the ministry he in turn receives from his wife who shares all the burdens he carries.
2. She Creates a Home
Christians are pilgrims here on earth and no one is more aware of this than a preacher’s wife. She is called upon to move approximately once every three to five years and create a “home” that will service changing circumstances and people and still provide warmth, love, as well as the element of stability. No easy task when the moving boxes are always in the garage.
3. She Suffers Quietly
When your life is public, your suffering is usually private. Preachers’ wives have long ago learned the virtue of “turning the other cheek” in order to stem the cycle of gossip and division that so often invades the church.
In this world, the preacher usually gets the “credit” for church growth (which rightfully belongs to the Lord) but in our hearts we know who deserves the crown.