Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Shepastor: "Menopause, Mayhem and the Ministry"
But I must not be too proud of the wonderful things that were shown to me. So a painful problem was given to me—an angel from Satan, sent to make me suffer, so that I would not think that I am better than anyone else. I begged the Lord three times to take this problem away from me. But the Lord said, “My grace is all you need. Only when you are weak can everything be done completely by my power.” So I will gladly boast about my weaknesses. Then Christ’s power can stay in me.
The term "mayhem" means, "The crime of maliciously injuring or maiming someone, originally so as to render the victim defenseless."
Ok, we are going to have "big girl" talk on Shepastor today! Send anyone who cannot handle this talk out of the room! Recently, my physician told me that I am entering "peri menopause." I believe her! Sometimes on and sometimes off. Periodic hot flashes, intensified mood swings, fatigue, periodic insomnia and brain fog. Can I get a witness? At times it feels like mayhem! In other words, at times I feel defenseless. Menopause does not care that I still have to preach, teach, visit the sick, pray for and encourage the discouraged, console the bereaved, counsel the wounded, depressed and confused.
And while someone might say, "See, that's why women should not become pastors," women are uniquely positioned to rely upon The Lord for an extra measure of grace and strength as we carry on the work of the ministry in earthen vessels. For some of us, menopause is the proverbial thorn in our sides. Through night sweats, fatigue, forgetfulness and clumsiness, the Holy Spirit whispers, "my grace is sufficient...my strength is made perfect in your weakness."
Some how God still uses us to bless, to heal, to lift, to shape, to mold, to love. The Lord comforts us in order that we may comfort others. The cavern of our wells are dug a bit deeper and wider as we wrestle with physiological mayhem, but spiritual graces of inner peace and blessed assurance. During this season of sometimes painful and unavoidable affliction, may we always remember that God's grace is sufficient. May we remember that we are not alone in this experience. Not only has The Lord promised to be with us, other sisters are going through the same struggles. May we stop pretending that nothing phases us and openly share our experiences with one another. May we prayerfully nurture and build a sisterhood that allows for transparency and support.
Hold on my sisters. This too shall pass!
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Until next Wednesday,
In faith, hope and perseverance,