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Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Before  you read on, please take the two minute
reader survey if you haven't already! 
There's also a convenient pop-up survey over there --> (3rd item) 

As I indicated in my post about my lovely wife, Jenni, she has a dynamic ministry in enlightening Christian educators about bringing children into the fullness of faith and experiencing God from a very early age (as opposed to the common approach of babysitting and entertaining the little ones while the adults get the real deal). This ministry has blossomed in the past few years through God’s blessing into a global traveling ministry of significant proportions. (She leaves tomorrow for ten day trip to Malaysia!) This is in addition to her position as head of our church’s children’s ministry team.

My own calling, on the other hand, has little to do with children’s ministry. I am a long-time musician and worship leader as well as a songwriter. About as close as I got to what my wife does is when I spent three years raising up, training and setting in place our church’s high-school aged worship team.

Yet, despite the disparate callings that my wife and I have, I still consider that we are in ministry together. My belief is that, even when it doesn’t necessarily appear to be so on the surface, a husband and wife are always called as a couple. Because we are one, a part of me is called to children’s ministry and a part of her is called to worship.

Huh, you ask. How exactly does that work? Well, let me describe briefly how it works for us.

Priesthood of All Believers

My wife and I believe that regardless of whether we work in the marketplace (as I do) or in the church (as my wife does) we are all called to be ministers in one form or another. God wants to use every life for his kingdom and for his glory.
  • Realize that you do have a ministry, whether it is formal or informal.

Mutual Support

The main thing for us is that we both fully support the calling of the other. I see the call of God on my wife and am determined to do what I can to see that fulfilled, despite the personal cost to me. She feels the same way about my calling and ministry. Support can come in many forms: finances, time, prayer, education, discussion, and encouragement.
  • Ask God to clearly reveal to you the calling he has on your spouse, and then let him or her know the importance of their ministry and your desire to see them walk it out in fullness.

Spiritual Covering

As Jenni’s husband, my covering of her spiritually extends to her ministry. That covering comes in the same form as my covering over her as husband: to love her sacrificially and to lay down my life to see her ministry flourish. It is not my job to control or micromanage her ministry, but to partner with Jesus in bringing it about. In like manner, Jenni submits herself to work in concert with the calling God has on my life, while purposefully keeping her own ministry under the protection of my covering.
  • See that your roles as husband and wife extend into your ministries. The bridal paradigm should extend to your callings.

Look for Crossover Opportunities

Jenni and I look for chances to minister directly together, because there is nothing we enjoy more. She has attended worship conferences with me. I led worship for a training conference she recently hosted at our church. I traveled with her to Alabama to minister at a church, helping with the PowerPoint, logistics and playing a few songs to open each session. We have just been invited to South Africa where she will teach on children’s ministry and I will do the same regarding worship.
  • Seek out opportunities where your ministries might cross over. Be willing to take a supporting role if necessary.

So that’s how it works out for us. We are still learning and growing in how to do our separate ministries together as a couple.

Please share your own story. How do you and your spouse walk out your individual callings as a couple?


Anonymous said...

I love this post. I just took the survey, and I'd like to see more posts about this topic!

I've actually been trying to get a grasp on this. Because its easy as pie to see my husband's calling. He works in corporate America, is studying to be a Minister, heads/serves on a few other ministries at church. I on the other hand, don't minister in the marketplace and I barely minister in the church. I assist a woman at church who is under my Pastor. I help with missions and outreach and I am on the intercessor team. But I consider those last two something that we're all called to do - serve and pray.

I feel at times that God has forgotten about me, lol. But I do have a lot of gifts and talents, just not sure where they fit. If that makes sense. And how they fit in with my husband. We've been married a year and before I KNEW my calling/purpose. Now I feel like it's "changing" or it was just a step God placed before me to get to where I am now. Make sense? lol.

Sorry for the long rant, in one of those moods. I've love to see more posts about this topic. And maybe how your wife feels about having a church only ministry...maybe I'm too used to the world validating what I do.

Scott said...

Hi Favor, and thanks for your comment.

Like you, I have had seasons of feeling a bit "forgotten" when it seemed that my gifts were less than fully utilized. What I have found, though, is that eventually it all begins to make sense as the fog of uncertainty lifts. I just encourage you to keep seeking, keep your heart open (as I can tell you are), and continue to let your marriage reflect the fact that as "one" the two of you are called together, no matter what that ends up looking like.

If you want to drop me an email, I'd be glad to respond with a bit more elaboration, and I'm sure my wife would be glad to give you her perspective as well.

Bless you!

Anonymous said...

You bring up a great points in your response. Regardless of what my calling may look like, we're one and we're called together. I know I need to grow in not needing the "glory" or recognition. Because I know I help me husband with everything God has Him doing!

You even hit in your post something that I missed before: "Be willing to take a supporting role if necessary."

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