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To Work the Impossible Work

For the Pastor's Wife: To Work the Impossible Work

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Somebody asked me what superpower I would want if I could have any of them. I thought about it for a while, and then I decided on Batman’s. Because as far as I can tell, Batman’s superpower is this: having a fat boatload of money.

After thinking about it a little more, I decided it was entirely conceivable that I’ve already been bitten by a radioactive spider. It would have to have been a spider that had the spider superpower of being a regular human. So now that’s my superpower—you know, being a regular human. But again, this worked out okay for Batman.

Superhuman minister’s wife powers? Never a question. I so obviously don’t have those either. I can’t leap tall fellowship hall tables—not in any number of bounds. Not even if it’s to get to the dessert table. It’s like, “up, up, and no-way.”

I’m not going to get all bent out of shape about not being a superhero though. For one thing, getting bent out of shape would make me like Mr. Fantastic or Elastic Man or somebody stretchy like that. But mostly because all of that is silly pretend power. I know where the real stuff comes from. We have power available to accomplish everything worthy of accomplishing—all through the power of the Spirit of God.

Through His power and according to His plan, every believer has the amazing opportunity to work for the Kingdom of God. Paul tells us in Ephesians 2:10: For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them (ESV). I so love thinking about the way every task has been long ago hand-chosen for each of us individually by a loving Father.

If He hand-picks each mission, why would we even for a second wonder where the power would come from to carry out each of those missions? In that same chapter in Ephesians, we’re told, In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit (2:22, ESV). We never lack the power to carry out whatever job He’s given us to do. That power—His power—dwells in us. First Corinthians 12:6 says that there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone (ESV).

We’re not talking about a person’s “abilities” here. It’s not our strength. Not our intelligence. Not our possessions or our money—even if we have a fat boatload of it. This power is infinitely bigger. We’re empowered by the Holy Spirit of our all-powerful God. Superpowers of the highest order.

If you ever find yourself feeling inadequate for a task you believe God has called you to, let me encourage you to remember that you don’t need to hesitate for a second. We’re told in 1 Corinthians 2:1–5 that if we know Jesus, even if we feel inadequate, we’ve got enough. When I came to you, brothers, announcing the testimony of God to you, I did not come with brilliance of speech or wisdom. For I didn’t think it was a good idea to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I came to you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. My speech and my proclamation were not with persuasive words of wisdom but with a powerful demonstration by the Spirit, so that your faith might not be based on men’s wisdom but on God’s power (1 Corinthians 2:1–5, HCSB). He will accomplish through you by His indwelling power every job He’s calling you to do. No need to shy away from any task—even those that seem overwhelming in your own non-super-heroic power.

The power to be everything you need to be as a pastor’s wife, the power to love your husband, your church—even the power to share His Gospel—is a superpower that comes directly from the Holy Spirit. Jesus gives us the order of events in Acts 1:8 when He says you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you, and you will be My witnesses (HCSB). I love that. No ifs there. Not a hesitation anywhere. You will receive power.

His Spirit changes us. It’s better than any superhero transformation. No radioactive spider bite needed. Don’t even bother with the gamma radiation. Through the omni-power of His Spirit, we can become a powerful force for the Kingdom. The Spirit of the Lord will control you, you will prophesy with them, and you will be transformed into a different person. When these signs have happened to you, do whatever your circumstances require because God is with you (1 Samuel 10:6–7, HCSB).

So go ahead. Do “whatever your circumstances require.” Whatever is required of you as a minister’s wife, as a mom, as a friend, as a daughter—whatever. Whatever is required of you as a child of God. Because He is with you. There is superpower there of the highest order. The power to change the world is right there. And it stretches from here to eternity.

Without the slightest assistance from Mr. Fantastic.

 


Rhonda Rhea is a pastor’s wife, mom, speaker, and author and is a regular contributor to the Missouri Baptist Pathway. She and her husband serve at First Baptist Church in Troy, Missouri. Adapted from Join the Insanity—Crazy-Fun Life in the Pastors’ Wives Club (New Hope Publishers, 2014).

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March 2016 Edition
Volume 24, Issue 3
March 2016