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Sometimes i just want to talk about clothes, hair, and makeup

Good afternoon! I'm taking a break with the kitties to make some coffee, with caramel creme flavoring of course, checking out some clothing styles on pinterest, and taking in some sunshine through the windows. I'm planning on taking advantage of the sunshine and blue sky with a walk this afternoon. The double jogging stroller I found at the thrift store last week is fantastic! It's also sometimes the only thing that keeps cranky girls content!

How is your day going? I hope you're trucking along this midweek day...

I've had a lot on my mind recently and felt like helping people understand some things about ministry life that they probably have never heard before. There is no way for anyone else to know just what ministry life is like unless they are in it, so I want to dispel a few myths and express a few truths! Here it goes...

MYTH: We have a problem-free existence. Nope! There are many struggles that I have experienced and are experiencing as I write this! Life is hard for me too. I get it! Plans I've had for myself have not worked out the way I would have chosen. People die, jobs don't work out, relationships fail, family drama happens, people betray my trust, people are mean, I ask why God allows certain things to happen...yep, been there. I question, struggle, and wrestle just like everyone else. I do have to remind myself that because of Jesus Christ, I have HOPE, which makes all the difference.

MYTH: We have lots of friends around all the time. I LOVE people and am a total extrovert, meaning I get my energy from being around others, but...sometimes, well, a lot of times, this life gets lonely! I'm not completely sure if people are intimidated or maybe they think I'm always busy. I would love for people to see me as my regular human self. I want to be invited to stuff that goes on. Not because of the position at church or what I can do for them, but just because people like me and value my friendship. Going to Chick-fil-A or meeting up to work on a fun craft project would be fun! Who doesn't want that?

MYTH: We endure criticism better than most (or maybe are immune). When I am cut, I bleed like everyone else. Words hurt. Like most jobs, people tend to mention criticisms more than compliments, which is to be expected. It still hurts, though, especially when people criticise my family. It is especially tough when God gives a task, and when I follow Him, people complain. I would like people to know that we want to be trusted to follow God's leadership and are staying true to what He calls us to do. Sometimes ideas will work and sometimes they will not. I am not superhuman. I cannot perform miracles. I cannot live to make everyone happy. It is discouraging when people constantly criticize events, mistakes, calendar events, among others. Plainly speaking, complaining does not increase job performance or motivation.

MYTH: Ministry is sunshine and rainbows because friends are involved. This job is the only one I know of where our friends are also the ones who give the criticisms and think they could do the job better. This is our place of worship and our social outlet, as well as a place of employment, so when something hurts us there, it hurts every area of our lives. I sometimes feel we have nowhere else to go for escape and safety.

TRUTH: Sometimes I just want to talk about clothes, hair, and makeup. I just want to hang out and laugh with friends and have coffee dates, talk about movies, and laugh. Sometimes I don't want to deal with someone's emotions or problems. Sometimes I don't want to talk about church. Don't be that person I see coming down the hall and want to run the other direction because I know they want something from me! Sometimes just hanging out and shopping is all I want to do! Let's go try on shoes!

TRUTH: We need family time too. We take the ministry job seriously and do realize there are no office hours - it is 24/7. I also know that psychologically, people need breaks and cannot continue to work without rest and refreshment. When church members give their time or hang out together, most times, they can leave work at work, and they are taking a break by going to church. When I go to church, it is fun and enjoyable to see people, but it is still always work at the same time. What is someone else's leisure time at church is our work time at church. I have learned in our time in vocational ministry that people expect a lot. To be fair, I think they honestly just don't realize how much they demand, because they don't realize that for everything they ask, there are 20 more demands waiting. To be a healthy person and a better ministry family, rest and breaks are essential. Ministers have yards to mow, trash to take out, and dog poop to scoop too! After a night at home, just being a family, a person can be refreshed to rock the world the next day!

TRUTH: Rumor weeds need to stopped. The rumor weed seems to grow rampant at times, but I want to encourage you to stop it before it gets bigger and take the time to find out the truth. Encourage the disgruntled person to speak personally to the one they have a problem with instead of compiling notebooks of complaints and comparing notes with other people (yes, I have seen this before). Also, remember it is not truth for sure unless you have seen it yourself. As "juicy" as some stories may be, it's still just a story until you know for yourself, so please never assume something interesting is true, but investigate for yourself. This probably also means going to the person it involves, reiterating my first point. This will simply save relationships. There is enough garbage and hurt in the world, so let's try to love people where we can. Truth should always be sought in every area of life.

TRUTH: We need grace too. Please let me make mistakes! Please let me be human! Please excuse me when I mess up, a program does not work well, or someone complains. Jesus gives each of us grace and I sure need it just like the next lady does. I may not always feel like smiling. Some days I may feel like a fat sloth. I may be tired some days. I may crawl into the building with frizzy hair, a runny-nosed baby on a hip, a one year old with a shoe missing and peanut butter all over her outfit, just trying to make it. SOMEONE ASKING, "HEY, HOW ARE YOU TODAY" WOULD MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE IN THE WORLD! Thanks for asking!

TRUTH: I love you and I love what we do. Please love on us too. We sure can use more of that! I believe God would smile on that as well...

I want to also add that our FAMILY is called to ministry - that's right - our 1 1/2 year old and six month old included! We want to serve Him the best we can. I will always be committed to Him and to what He has called us to do. We often go visit families with our daughters because babies seem to bring a light and joy like only they can. Babies seem to represent God's hope. I also believe it teaches them, even now when they are young, that life is not all about us. We serve Christ by serving people. We can use what God has given us to give to others. Right now, their presence and laughter is how they can minister to others at their age! Please send ministry families you know some encouragement TODAY! You will be an enormous blessing in their lives! You might also include a Chick-fil-A gift card as an added "happy." :) Have a fabulous day!



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