(Today's post covers an upcoming weekly link-up, plus upcoming topics of discussion: sexual abuse in the church, a soon-to-be released pastors' wives novel, the unique challenges of small churches, and some advice you may have heard that I believe is unhelpful.)
When I began this site last year, I burned myself out a bit. I tried to write every day on this blog, plus keep my personal blog updated, plus spend time to adequately promote this site. It just got to be too much, and I needed to take a break and regroup.
There was a time when I could keep that up. But life has just been really weird for a long time now. Although we're rounding out the 4th year since we've moved across the country, I still feel like I've lost my bearings somewhat. We live 30 minutes from our church building and it's challenging for me to minister in that context, plus also be involved in the community where we live, which is completely separate. I also can't dismiss that whole bad salad incident as perhaps part of me is still damaged (i.e. my brain?) -- I've just not been the same since.
So, I've broken down and regrouped, and have set more realistic goals. At this point, I'm hoping to post once a week. I'm still open to others posting, but I'm thinking this site needs to grow a bit first before there's interest. I also hope to have a weekly check-in where you guys can link up your favorite post of the week. I'm thinking I'll do that link up post on Fridays?
I do have several posts I've been working on in the queue that (Lord willing) you can hopefully look forward to in the coming weeks. The topic of sexual abuse in the church has been in the news lately. I'm working on a post with the help of an old friend, who's going to help me navigate the sensitive elements and also clarify facts for me, as needed.
There's a new pastors' wives novel coming out in late April, and I had the opportunity to read an advanced copy of it. I'll be reviewing it and also posting some questions for discussion. Though not a pastor's wife herself, the author really did a good job of portraying many realities we may find ourselves in. Also, unlike too many others in media, she didn't violate us with unflattering stereotypes.
I also have an upcoming post or two specifically for pastors' wives in small churches. I grew up in a small church and probably will always be in small church ministry, as my pastor husband seems to be gifted with the patience it takes to slowly revitalize these situations with God's mercy and help. Many ministries try to address our struggles and they generally do a good job; but unless you're in them and are even experiencing them fresh, I think it's hard to fully relate sometimes.
And finally, a topic I'm working on and would love to hear your input: "Be Dead to It". Have you ever been given that advice, especially in regards to enduring criticism or personal attacks? I have, and I've tried to put it into practice. But, I'm realizing that it's another case of bad advice. I've got a rough draft with some practical reasons of why it's harmful, but I'm also searching out God's word and others' input for help. If you have any thoughts on the subject, please weigh in with your comments!