Of all the interesting things Allen and I have done together, church planting takes the cake. It's hard to accurately depict the challenges, trials, emotions, heartaches and even joys that accompany the journey, but I am so thankful that a book has been written with the church planting wife in mind.
In the first chapter alone, my emotions were peaked and my eyes were watery thinking about our first year. As I remembered the early days of church planting and what it felt like to be on an emotional roller coaster...crying out to God for rest, for friendship, for balance... As hard as it was, I am ever thankful to God for testing and strengthening my faith as it could only be done in the church planting fire. I'm grateful that my faith, my marriage, my security all came through the roughest part fireproofed. Christine accurately represents the challenges we face and I appreciate her appeal to the heart of the church planter wife.
"Your heart is vital to the mission. As you give God your heart, He will give you His. God's heart for you is that church planting be the soil in which you grow in Christlikeness. With His heart as your own, your role and the challenges of church planting become opportunities for growth and ministry, and church planting becomes an exciting adventure of radical faith." (p. 23)
Weaved in and out of every chapter is a heart check and plea to cultivate a dependent heart on the Lord. I am thankful that this book isn't a church planting rant, an opportunity to discuss the injustices that the wife faces. On the contrary, the heart is addressed first and continually as the primary object of God's mission.
Relating to Christine's experience was easy. If you watched me reading this book, you would have seen me nodding and smiling (or crying!) as I progressed. From knowing my "role" to sleepless nights wondering if we were insane, to trying to find balance, to seeking true friends, I related to most everything she covers in this book. As a"Helpmate to the Man Who Does Everything," we, as church planting wives, NEED wisdom and encouragement to assist us on our journey. I am thankful that God called Christine and her husband to plant a church, as well as share her wisdom through the journey.
If you would like to receive a copy of Christine Hoover's new book, The Church Planting Wife, she is giving away a copy to one blessed Duty Chronicles reader. It may just be YOU!
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