>> January 20, 2010
I got this bouquet last weekend.
It was the first weekend at our new church. The congregation was warm, friendly, and the church seemed to thrum with vibrancy. It felt like it was nearly bursting at the seams.
I've never been welcomed in a new district like that before. In one previous district on our first weekend, no one seemed to know or care that we were the new pastors. Granted, it was a large church and we weren't the only pastoral family. But still... after my husband's first sermon we waited for lunch plans. A welcome potluck? No. An invitation home? Huh uh.
Not last weekend - in this district it was like meeting a new family. Of course, there were little things. Like the woman who came up and commented that "your baby was really fussy during church!"
(And I swallowed back the retort that would have sounded something like: "Lady, my kid is 11 weeks old. He sat quietly on his daddy's lap during a 15-minute children's story, and fussed for LITERALLY NINETY SECONDS at the beginning of the sermon before conking out for a nap. I got up at 5:30 this morning so I could make it to church on time with my hair fixed and in a church dress. Yesterday I cooked all afternoon so I could bring a dish to my own welcome potluck. And right now my whole body is screaming 'cause I'm carrying a diaper bag in one hand and a 14-pound baby in the other, wearing a girdle and standing in 4-inch heels because I want to make a good impression on our first weekend here. You are NOT seriously going to stand here and try to tell me that my baby was too fussy!")
But if I'd blurted all that I might as well have just come in my pajamas, 'cause it would have obliterated any good impression I was trying to make.
And honestly, in this new place - where my husband is the senior pastor and I'm the only pastor's wife - I really did want to make a good impression. I want them to like me. I long to make new girlfriends. I very much DO NOT want to tick anyone off on the first day!
I don't think most people have any idea just how much the pastor's wife wants to be liked. Or how desperately we hope to find friends. Or how we cringe when other women our age look intimidated just by walking past us.
So that's my latest first-weekend-in-a-new-church story. How about you?
How do you feel the first time your husband preaches in a new church? Do you do anything special to get off on the right foot?