Impersonating the White Tornado

I’ve been reading the book of Nehemiah and learning some fascinating lessons on leadership and service as I move into what God has in store for me in 2008.   This morning I read through chapters 3 and 4, as Nehemiah detailed who repaired what part of the wall protecting Jerusalem.   In 3:5, he mentioned the noblemen of Tekoa, who were the one group that he lists as lazy (Belinda’s interpretation).  Even the priests contributed to helping in the rebuilding of the wall (vs.22), but these men will be listed in history as the men who were unwilling to ‘put their shoulders to the work of their Lord.’   I’ll have to study this more in a different Bible, but my historical understanding of noblemen would lead me to believe that they probably scoffed at the idea of manual labor, thinking that what they were being asked to do was beneath them.   Another possibility, since Nehemiah specifically points to the men’s decision to not follow their leadership, is that they had no respect for their leader, or that they were mule-headed in responding to authority.   I pondered the question, how many times might I have missed out on the work of God because I turned my nose up at a task that was “unworthy” of my abilities?


I love the example our pastors’ wives set before us.   Growing up, and until we joined this church eight years ago, I had always been exposed to the pastor’s wife as more of a princess.   Her primary role within the church was to sit silently on the side of the pastor and look pretty.   In fact, as a bit of a digression, that’s been a fascinating piece of this investigation into the alleged financial malpractices of various mega-church ministers: we as a people love to pamper and shower our ministerial staff.   I’ve got my own opinions about giving ministers and ministers’ wives Rolls Royces and fur coats (how much of this could be used for missions and outreach?), but I’ve also been to churches where the leadership fully expects to be placed on a pedestal, whether it is a car, a piece of jewelry, or just the biggest piece of chicken at the Sunday dinner.  Anyway, as I was saying, the pastor’s wives at our church have taken on a very different role: they work, and they work hard.   Those who knew our pastor’s wife when she first arrived at the church jokingly refer to her as the ‘white tornado’ because she can clean quicker and better than any storm.   Whether serving the sick, ministering an encouraging word, or washing dishes, this group of ladies models the servant leadership of Jesus Christ, and they are amazing to watch.


Scripture states that whether we clothe the naked, feed the hungry, take care of a child, or in any way do for the least of them, we have done it unto Him.   It also tells us that each drop of water we pour for others is a ministry unto Him.   As we move into the new year, my husband and I are being asked to participate in a ministry that will fundamentally change the way our church operates.   We are interacting with the church leadership, helping make decisions, and impacting thousands with our words and actions.   It would be easy to get big-headed and consider ourselves on a higher level.  It would also be easy to become mule-headed as we will undoubtedly confront the church elders, who’ve ‘done it this way forever.’   Our church history will hopefully be that we as a couple helped the church move from its 80’s technology into this age.   If we really do our jobs, a number of cumbersome processes will be streamlined, allowing the leadership to focus on higher priorities.     However, my personal prayer is also that I will set another excellent example of servant leadership just as those whom the Lord has allowed me to see.   Lord, remind me gently to put my shoulder (and my wisdom and discernment) to whatever work is asked of me.

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8 thoughts on “Impersonating the White Tornado

  1. And wish you a happy New Year…

    I must return and mull over your post a bit when the kids aren't so antsy, as Nehemiah 4:6 has been the verse I have had in my mind as the theme for this last year, and I believe again for the upcoming one…be sure to read Bobbie's post (Encouragement Along the Way Bobbie) when she gets it up, it's what encouraged me last year to consider that the Lord would give me a verse for the year.


  2. Very inspiring post! πŸ™‚ I so agree with you on what you have written. Thank you for your words of encouragement on my blog. That is one of the great things about blogging, it ups the level of accountability. I would not mind the mutual support! πŸ™‚

  3. I love Nehemiah actually that is where my Grandson's name came from , chap. 3 Jaden (spelled Jadon in the Bible) was a worker of the Wall and Nehemiah is his middle name. And you know He loves working with his hands and wants to be a construction worker.

    I am glad you have a Pastor's wife that is a good example and not a primadonna. 1 Thes 4:11 Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you. That is for everyone not just the flock.

    Happy New Year.
    Because of Jesus, Bobbie

  4. I'm sure you'll have plenty of time and opportunity to do just that! Praise God for the minister's wives.


  5. Fantastic post, thank you for sharing your heart and the heart of the Father with us.

    Certainly caused some things to stir up within me.

  6. Thanks for coming by my blog. The snowy tree branch was found on line and I just cut it to fit my blog. I'm not very good with HTML so it is a learning experience. I will keep reading you! I noticed on your profile that we have the same birthday except I am a year younger. God Bless!

  7. At our previous church I always wondered just how much the pastor's wives did. It was a very large church so I couldn't have known everything they may have been involved in, but always had that feeling that they didn't get their hands dirty. I don't want to sound as if I'm accusing them of doing nothing, but I didn't often see much involvement from them. They could have very well been very busy behind the scenes for the Lord and I didn't see it.

    Our church now is much smaller and the staff and their families are all hardworking. I can see that possibly because of the size of the church, and because I'm at a different place in my life where I am more free from a perspective of time to be more involved in working in the church. Our Sr. Pastor's wife and the Youth Minister's wife cook a meal on Wednesday nights and clean up the kitchen. Until recently our Pastor's wife was also the church janitor. It is a real encouragement to see the staff and their families busy about the work of the church even if it means getting their hands dirty. I know they don't do it for recognition, but out of love for God's service and His people. It is so very encouraging to know that we can work along side these women and there is no barrier because as our Pastor says "The ground is level at the cross".
    MissyEdited by smokeybutter on Jan. 7, 2008 at 8:58 PM

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