I am a preacher’s wife. What does that mean? It means nothing more and nothing less than I am married to a man who has devoted his entire life to teaching people about God, reaching out to the lost, and helping to build up the Christians around him. Being his wife means I signed on to help him in any way I can. As the preacher family, we see a lot. An awful lot. We see so much good, so many blessings, they take our breath away! And we see bad. We see pain, sickness and even death. We are there when the tears start to flow, and do our best to provide comfort. We see people at their very best, and we see people at their very worst. Are we perfect? Oh no! No no no! We are, however, living our lives acutely attuned to God’s commands, with a sharp eye on ourselves, lest we fall. We are not The Judge, but we do strive to teach His Word, even when this makes others uncomfortable. Always striving to speak the truth in love, always with an open heart to not offend, but to help others recognize the vile, putrid, ugliness of sin. Because that’s what sin is: vile, putrid and ugly.
I’ve taught classes on modesty and purity, only to be laughed at for being a close-minded prude by teen and mother. I’ve also had to comfort that same mother when the daughter becomes pregnant out of wedlock, and she cannot understand what went wrong.
I’ve listened to my husband teach against the evils of alcohol, using logic, intelligence and mountains of scripture, only to hear Christians scoff, argue and defend the practice of alcohol consumption right there in Bible class. I’ve also then had to help families of those who were present in that class, as they now have to deal with the heartbreak of alcohol and drug addiction, and the painful consequences tearing the family apart.
I’ve heard lesson after lesson emphasizing worship attendance, sitting near families who have no plan to attend next Sunday’s worship because their child has a sports activity at the same time as worship. I’ve later listened as these parents lament their grown children falling away from the church when they left home.
And I wish…
I wish I could make people love to worship God.
I wish I could make people love the beauty and simplicity of God’s Word.
I wish I could make parents create a Christ-centered home, in which their children are nurtured daily with God’s Word.
I wish I could make people love to obey God, not just the parts they agree with, but all of God’s laws.
I wish I could make people love to read and study God’s Word, then actively seek ways to apply it to their lives.
I wish I could make people long for and strive for a wholesome life, free from the addicting dangers of alcohol, drugs, pornography and other things that bring out ugliness in life.
I wish I could make people feel convicted when they sin, so that they would repent and come back to a right relationship with God, instead of growing angry and defensive of their sin, holding on to their sin as though it were a wonderful treasure.
God, in His infinite wisdom, granted everybody free will. We can love Him, or not. We can worship Him, or not. We can obey Him, or not. God gave the very best He had when He allowed His Son to be abused and murdered as a sacrifice to atone for the sins of the very ones abusing and murdering Him. God doesn’t want us to love Him because we HAVE to! He wants our love because we WANT to give Him our love! He wants us to long for the beauty of a Christ-centered life! God tells us of the wonders of Heaven because He wants us there with Him for all eternity! God doesn’t want anyone to be lost; 1 Timothy 2: 4 states that God is one, “who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
And so, we teach on, with encouragement from the Great Encourager, “Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.” (Gal. 6:9) Because at the end of the day, when I stand before God, I will stand alone. I will answer for my own life, and the only words I want to hear are, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant!”
By Karla Sparks
Karla is happily married to Jason Sparks, who preaches for the Lord’s church at the White Rock church of Christ in Dallas, Texas. She is a homeschool mom of 2, Jody and Jayla. She loves working with her kids, serving the church, and doing some baking and crafting on the side.