Not that 14,000 stranger-sisters weren't amazing with whom to worship and break Bread. That indeed was a thing to behold, especially with the ears. It made me long for heaven, to hear this sound made when countless throngs worship in voice. I almost listened more than I joined in the singing of praise, because the sound of that many voices reverberating, ricocheting through a round concrete dome whet the appetite for what is to come. (Come quickly, Lord Jesus...)
But the intimate knowing and the weekly walking alongside in faith with the few, it's just as beautiful a thing. And intimately walking alongside one's pastor is another marvel. How about a bit of the inside scoop, a glimpse behind the scenes, rather than the usual behind-the-pulpit perspective you are so used to?
These are a few of my favorite things, not because Mike is my husband, but because he is my pastor.
His one hour sermons are so very much more. His computer is a permanent fixture on the kitchen table. Years of daily study have worn out and completely broken two of our chairs. The padding on a third is deflated, and he's currently working on destroying a fourth. When we gather to eat our meals, we bring in a fold-up chair to accommodate the five of us, because our table and chairs are devoted to the feeding of a flock, not a family. Nightly I remember this when I sit on the hard deflated seat, as that souvenir is mine.
I have seen his personal prayer journal, a leather-bound book with a page devoted to each one of his sheep, so as to leave none out, forget no one, not a need, not a single answered prayer gone unrecognized or unrecorded. He is a man devoted to prayer; his concern is for God's children.
Among my arsenal of bible study tools, he is at the top of the stack. I know of no one who knows God's word as well. He is my walking concordance. I bring my questions and wonders to him, and we revel together in our God.
I am not afraid to trust him to lead and protect and provide for my children or for me. The one who is willing to vacuum as well as call us on the carpet and has the wisdom and love to know the appropriate time to engage in each, this is a godly man. Look it up, it must be in Proverbs somewhere, because he loves this book, reads from it daily, the whole book monthly, year after year. He's a whole book of proverbial sayings that eats my food and sleeps beside me and fathered my children. He puts beautiful feet to God's compassion every day, and I know because he lives and breathes in my house.
You are a treasure to me, Mike, by far the best thing on earth that's happened in my life. It is my honor to be your helper, to serve you, to share your life, to be one flesh.
You are so easy to love.
|Mike with Naki, one of the youngest in our Guatemala Children's Home|
Number 320 in my list of 1,000 (and probably many others already along the way) ~ Mike