Just a couple of days ago, a friend asked me about my life as a pastor’s wife. She said seminary schools should have a course specifically for pastor’s wife, to teach them about the role… ’cause our hubbies have training to be a pastor, we should also get training to be a pastor’s wife.
To be quite honest, the life of a pastor’s wife is not easy, and very lonely, especially when you have a little one… I wondered why that is and this is what I came up with:
I remember during hubby’s time in seminary, he took one course where you need to figure out your personality by taking that Meyers-Briggs personality test. He came out as an ENFP. Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling, Perception. Not sure what the last 3 meant, but he’s definitely an extravert. He needs to be around people all the time, and he’s pretty easy going, so he has lots of friends. I remember one time we were at Ash Bridges playing at one of the corner beach courts with pretty high traffic, he must’ve given hi-5s/props to over 40-50 individuals passing by that day because he actually knows them.
So, continuing my story, he ended up hanging out with a group of 3 other seminary students who are also ENFPs (hanging out with them is pretty… fun, loud and crazy). That group alone drew in a bunch of other great students from the seminary that I have the privilege of getting to know as well. Now, this is not to put down any body who is currently a pastor or planning to be a pastor, but I did notice that those from the group who are pastors today are all extraverts – at least the ones I’m closer to.
Maybe it’s just me, and me alone, but I’m attracted to people who are opposite of me. Because where I fall short, my spouse is able to help me in those areas and vice versa, thus making us a team. So when I took the test, it is true, I am somewhat opposite to my hubby. I’m an ISFJ. All I know is, introvert. Ah.. a quality I know so well. That’s why I like sitting in my cubby with my headphones on and do my designs – I think a lot of graphic or web designers are like that.
Sometimes I get the feeling that members of the congregation just expects a pastor’s wife to be the same as their hubby because the two are one, but they’re not the same. The only reason I say this is because I once used to think that way before becoming a pastor’s wife.
If let’s say that majority of the pastors are extraverts (a pretty good quality to have as a pastor) and we all tend to marry our opposites, then there is a huge possibility that your pastor’s wife is an introvert.
So now that I’ve become a pastor’s wife, it’s been… a learning curve. It really challenges me to come out of my comfort zone. I have no problem being the yappy one in the one-on-one conversations.. but it’s definitely difficult for me to walk up to someone and introduce myself, or even go up to someone and just give them a hug. With a little one, it’s just far easier for me to hide behind her (as in, run into nursery room, pick her up and dash off).
Maybe I’m speaking only for myself, but maybe I’m speaking for some pastor’s wives out there.. we’re not being rude, we want to be your friend… but it’s hard for us to make that first step.. so hug a pastor’s wife today!