Happy Monday to you, bloggers! I hope you had a Jesus-filled Easter weekend. We certainly did, although I think we may have spoiled one of our precious children because I am dealing with an unusually rebellious little heart today. I'm about ready to throw away large amounts of candy if someone's attitude doesn't improve. Maybe this sweet little darling will wake up refreshed from his or her nap.
Did you have fun enjoying whatever thing you may have given up for Lent? I had deactivated my Facebook account. As I've said before, I was surprised to find that my life felt a lot quieter without it. I wasn't sure if I'd get back on, but last night I did...just to see. I think the problem is more with me than with Facebook. For some reason I feel an unhealthy amount of responsibility to know, deeply care, and respond to whatever I see on there. But I don't think people can be expected to know, deeply care, and respond to the highs, mediums, and lows of hundreds or thousands of people they don't even interact with in person. Do you know what I mean? I'm going to try a very scaled back version and see if I can handle that, but if not I know I can live without the darn thing. Imagine that!
Another thing I had given up was time on the computer after Curtis got home from work. That was a really nice change and Curtis asked me to keep that up. For one thing, I've actually had time to read books. My husband and I have enjoyed a lot of great discussions while reading side by side at night. Another benefit of staying off the computer on weeknights has been going to bed a lot earlier every night. Since my lack of sleep significantly affects my patience with my kids the next day, I'd say that's a pretty big benefit!
I hope this doesn't sound like I'm tooting my own horn. I just wanted to share my thoughts in case you find yourself sinking in the same WIFI motorboat that I was.
One of the books I just read was You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes by Lisa McKay. Lisa is a preacher's wife, a mother of four, and has a blog and an online ministry to pastors' wives. I got to know her through her blog a few years ago and then I just happened to spot her at the Proverbs 31 Ministries/KSBJ Girls Night Out in 2009. It was great meeting her in person. She's adorable and has the cutest accent! What is more, Lisa has an immense love for Jesus and she teaches through the written and spoken word. She's one of those women who you could laugh with and get a little teary with in the same conversation. I love friends like that. She's wise, down to earth, loving, spiritually challenging, and willing to share her own triumphs and tragedies. And I think I forgot to mention that she's really funny. It helps to have good humor when you're in ministry.
I think there are a handful of ministry wives who read my blog and I wanted to make sure that I pass on the word about Lisa's book, You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes. I've read a couple of other books for ministry wives and this one has definitely been my favorite. When I closed the book, I did not feel defeated or like I could never measure up to the role or the expectations. Instead, I felt like God could enable me to have an exciting and fulfilling life serving with my husband in ministry.
One thing that really rubs me the wrong way is cynicism toward the church. Like, I hate it. One time in Sunday school I rather publicly rebuked someone for taking what I considered to be a cheap shot at the church. (I regret that very much now.) I'm typically not that kind of person, but that cynical attitude just takes me past my manners.
I really appreciated that while she doesn't gloss over hard things, Lisa maintains a loving and positive attitude toward the church. She's not a cynical pastor's wife who wrote a book because she'd been burned so many times. She's a happy pastor's wife who loves her role and the people she is serving. Even when she shares painful experiences she and her husband have had, she doesn't lose sight of the goal, which is to love people.
Lisa did numerous surveys of ministry wives and laypeople to prepare for this book. I loved reading the quotes she used from those surveys. Also, at the end of each chapter there are several discussion questions. I think this could be a great book to read with other staff wives or with a group of friends who are also serving in ministry with their husbands.
I thought I'd share the chapter titles because it will give you a great idea of what you will read in Cute Shoes:
1) My husband's calling is my calling too.
2) I can still wear cute shoes.
3) I can potentially be my husbands worst enemy (Um, Amanda will go ahead and amen that.)
4) Church can hurt.
5) I can have BFFs in the church pews.
6) How to embrace my own thing.
7) How to raise my PKs to keep the faith.
8) About the joys of hello.
9) The greatest gift is love.
*For pastors only: Can we talk?
You can get to know Lisa at her blog, www.APreachersWife.com. And you can get more info about/purchase the book by clicking here.