Struggles of a Pastor-Mom!

Baker_CalledSo, it is the day after Easter and I feel like a mom failure.

Holidays and life in ministry can be difficult. Holidays and being a woman in ministry can really be difficult. This year is no different.

Things I wanted to do before Easter:

:Buy my kids cute outfits in fun colors

:Purchase much needed new shirts for my husband 

:Find a cute spring type outfit for me to wear to church

:Create beautiful easter baskets that show my kids (and the online world) that I love my kids and shower them with gifts

:Have a great family time of decorating eggs

:Cut and prep all the food for Easter lunch

:Take a memorable family picture

:Have a clean house and beautifully set table for family and friends

Holy Week is a crazy busy week in the life of the church. This year I had Wednesday night practice. Thursday was full of prepping, planning,and preparing our classrooms and teachers for the families that would attend. Friday was our Tenebrae service. Saturday was more prep and an important family birthday.

Easter Sunday arrived and the alarm went off at 4:30 am. I arrived at church for sunrise service with 5 dozen donuts in my hand and a Venti Latte.

As a kids Pastor the day was great. Meeting new families, watching little ones worship, connecting with parents, thanking volunteers. It was a beautiful, long day. (Note to self – Don’t wear heals when you stand and walk from 5:30am -1pm) The day was great! I wish every Sunday was this electric with energy and fun.

As a mom it felt like a disaster. Remember my dream list before Easter, the things I wanted to do before Easter rolled around?

:Buy my kids cute outfits in fun colors – I did buy the kids one piece of new clothing each. The problem is that I never saw them all together in them. The twins ran to class before I could see them and by the time I got home, they had already changed.

:Purchase much needed new shirts for my husband – Never happened.

:Find a cute spring type outfit for me to wear to church – Ha Ha! Nope. I wore the same outfit I wore to Good Friday service with a different tank top . . .one that was 5 years old.

:Create beautiful easter baskets that show my kids (and the online world)  that I love my kids and shower them with gifts – I never made it to the store to get baskets. I did manage to purchase a pez for each kid, but while writing this I realized they are still sitting in a bag somewhere in the house. Oops!

:Have a great family time of decorating eggs – Decorate eggs? What is that? At 8:00 pm when the boys where heading to bed one of them looked up at me and said  – hey Mom, we never did eggs. Ugh!

:Cut and prep all the food for Easter lunch – I walked into the house with my company in the kitchen cutting the veggies and making guacamole.

:Take a memorable family picture – We never were all together in our outfits. In fact, the boys were in the pool three different times during the day. I think they each wore at totally of 4 outfits. (Let’s see 4 x 3 = 12 different outfits, plus 9 swim trunks, and 6 towels – – Do you see why I hate doing laundry?)

:Have a clean house and beautifully set table for family and friends – I walked into the bathroom after our company left and there was no hand towel to dry hands. The floor had food all over it, good thing people wore shoes! If our company had walked down the back hallway they would have seen two piles of laundry that cover the entire walkway.

So, as I laid on the couch as the evening was coming to a close I had a choice. Be frustrated by all the things I couldn’t do or didn’t do, or I could choose to be thankful for the ministry call that is on my life. My kids understand that Easter is about Jesus and not eggs, they don’t expect new outfits or baskets. We serve as a family and that ultimately is much more important than a fancy set table. The people that enter my home know that I am normal with messy floors and piles of laundry. They also know that we love them and are thankful we can break bread together.

When God calls you, you just do it. Sometimes it means you have to give something up. This Easter it was my to-do list.

So, as I end the day after Easter, I am honored to be a kids pastor. I am honored to be a mom. I am going to spend the next 30 years figuring out how those two jobs work together. I am thankful for Jesus who whispers to me as I drift off to sleep, “You are NOT a failure, you are called.”

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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10 thoughts on “Struggles of a Pastor-Mom!

  1. Hard lesson to learn as a woman. HE is our validation. As we stand before Jesus in heaven I am so thankful the unchecked lists won’t mean a thing. Answering His call will. 🙂 I pray Holy Spirit strength and rest for you (and us, we moms need it:) truly you are in your calling. I am eternally grateful for you and your families commitment to Christ. In His Love, j uribe

  2. Great article, Amber! Please know your efforts are much appreciated. The LeFave family thinks the world of you and we are thankful for you!! 🙂

  3. I was feeling the same, only insert Nonna for mom. You’d think I would have this all down after years of experience. I get to have a do over with the grandbabies this time. Nope. All of the above happened and I am not a Pastor. My husband and I were taking care of his 95 year old mother and the weeks of emotional and physical “exercises” for lack of a better description sucked away every ounce of energy and brain cells I had left. Jesus whispered to me after the house was empty, that I get to celebrate Him every day. So thankful for His grace that isn’t restricted to a special Sunday. So need to learn to rest in my endeavor be a Mary and not a Martha. Big sigh. Next year!

  4. I had almost the same to do list – and I failed at most of it too…I told my daughter we’d color eggs next week. I did manage Easter baskets but my camera ran out of memory so no pix. My teen-aged boys were so crabby from having to work all of the Youth group Pancake breakfast shifts (due to several no-shows) that the afternoon was not fun family time – but rather nap time – 5 am church arrival made everyone tired out! I never got my new Easter outfit – oh well! Biggest fail – when we finally left church – we went out to lunch as a family of five – we took two cars – when it was time to leave – I took our 17 yr old in my car, my husband took the 10 year old in his car and we left the 15 year old in the bathroom thinking the other parent had him! I am a co-pastor with another mom – so it is good to have another mom pastoring with me – she “gets” it!

  5. Thank you for this. My kids are currently on spring break this week and I have had such a struggle being fun mom/wife on spring break, yet also get done what needs to get done after Easter and to prepare for this Sunday. I was wondering how moms in ministry did it. Thanks for being real and showing it’s an ebb and flow of striving and falling short but knowing God’s grace is enough. Whew! Take a nap.