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Are you struggling my friend? Me too! There is so much going on in our world between COVID, world crises, natural disasters, you name it. How are we supposed to handle all of this? Some days it feels too much.

The Bible says in Psalm 61: “1 O God, listen to my cry! Hear my prayer!
2 From the ends of the earth, I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, 3 for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. 4 Let me live forever in your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of your wings!”(NLT)

I am so thankful that no matter what you or I face, we can go to God. He is our safe place. And the Holy Spirit is our Comforter. I’ve experienced His comfort more in 2021 than ever before. God has given me supernatural strength as I faced the death of my parents in January and in July when we lost my sister-in-law and niece in a car accident. I never dreamed we would have two double funerals in our family.

What are some practical things we can do when feeling overwhelmed? One of the things I purposely choose to do is walk away from social media and anything that might cause anxiety. I replace it by playing a game with my husband, or watching a light hearted movie, reading a fun book* or simply soaking in the tub.

I have to be honest though. Sometimes I feel a little guilty for walking away from all that is going on. I bet you can relate. However, I’m learning if I don’t take time away, then I’m not much good to anyone. So let go of the guilt my friend and take some “me time” so that you can be there for your family, friends, and church family when they need you most.

Another thing I do, is tell God how I really feel. Just this week I said, “God, I don’t understand why You’re allowing so many pastors and their families to suffer and die from COVID. I don’t get it! You can stop this! But God, no matter what, I choose to trust You!

God’s shoulders are big enough to handle our doubts and questions. I am so grateful He allows us to be real with Him and He still loves us and comforts us.

My prayer for you today is for God to give you supernatural strength and peace as you navigate through this difficult season.

What are things you do to take a break from the stress of the world? Weigh in on this subject in the comments below!

*A book that I recently read (written by a friend of mine) is The Sahar of Zanzibar by Shirley Gould.


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Letting Go of Offense

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If you’ve been a pastor’s wife for very long, chances are you have had some hurtful things said to you. Sometimes it may feel as though you’re a target for people to tell you what they really think. I’ve had women criticize my clothes, my children, you name it. I even had one lady tell me that I keep my house too clean. Imagine that!

I will never understand why some people feel it’s okay to say whatever they feel like to the pastor’s wife and she is supposed to be fine with it. I’ve often thought to myself, “Honey if I talked to you the way you talk to me, you’d leave the church and never come back.” As a pastor’s wife my friend, you get it.

We must choose how to handle offense so it doesn’t handle us. Have you ever seen a duck go under water? What does it do when it comes up out of the water? Yep, you know it! It shakes the water right off it’s back. That’s what we need to do when someone says something rude or uncalled for. Refuse to own it. Don’t dwell on it. Let it go my friend. I’ve found one of the best responses to give someone is simply, “I’m sorry you feel this way.” If we try to defend ourselves, it can make matters worse. When we refuse to entertain their rudeness, it’s like throwing water on a fire.

In this video, I share a few more thoughts on what to do when someone says or does something that is offensive.

How do you handle when someone is rude or criticizes you or your family? Weigh in on this subject in the comments below!

It’s Almost Our Birthday!

Although God laid the idea on our founder’s heart many years ago, it didn’t come to fruition until last year. In April 2020, Silently Bleeding: Finding Hope for the Pastor’s Wife was born.

We still have a lot of room to grow, but we have already come so far!

Our Facebook group has over 250 members, our Instagram account is up and starting to gain momentum, and we have over 40 videos on our YouTube channel.

Here at Silently Bleeding, we know that if we aren’t growing, we’re stagnating. So as we prepare to celebrate our first birthday, we wanted to reach out to you.

What drew you to Silently Bleeding?

What videos have blessed or inspired you?

What topics would you like to see us cover?

Feel free to leave any other suggestions in the comments below.

Expectations of the Pastor’s Wife

Many times a pastor’s wife is expected to do it all. If there are positions that need filled, she is the one to fill them. This can lead to burn out and breakdown if it is not remedied.

In this candid interview, Jelly Jordan Valimont shares some of her experiences with expectations. She shares how juggling it all is not always a God thing, and how she would do things differently if she the opportunity to do it over.

Jelly also offers advice to women who are just starting out as pastors’ wives regarding how to deal with difficult expectations. Her wisdom and compassion in this interview are such a blessing.

Don’t have time to watch? Most Silently Bleeding videos are non-interactive, meaning you can listen to them without missing anything. Whether you are driving, washing dishes, going for a walk, or completing other daily tasks, you can still be encouraged by these videos simply by listening.

You can find this interview, Expectations of the Pastor’s Wife, and more on our Silently Bleeding YouTube channel.

Have you ever felt like you were under the weight of too many expectations? How did you find balance? What helped you determine which expectations were from God and which were from man?

The Balancing Act

Shirley Gould, author and ministry veteran, has been involved in many areas of ministry over the course of her life. In this interview, she discusses the importance of being yourself while also remaining teachable.

None of us are perfect, but God designed each of us perfectly. While we always have room to grow, it’s important that we choose not to give in to the pressure to change who we are at our core.

Ultimately, God is the only One whose opinion truly matters, but sometimes He places people in our lives to help us become the person He wants us to be.

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”

Proverbs 27:17 (NIV)

Becoming more like Jesus – both in our personal lives and in ministry – should be our number one goal. Check out The Balancing Act interview to hear Shirley’s practical advice on the subject.

Don’t forget that most of our interviews do not require you to actively watch them, so if it works better for you to listen in while you do other things, you won’t miss a thing.

You can find other helpful and inspiring interviews on our Silently Bleeding YouTube Channel.

If you are a pastor’s wife or a female pastor, feel free to search for our Silently Bleeding support group on Facebook. We’d love to have you join us!

What are some practical ways you’ve been able to grow while staying true to the woman God created you to be? Weigh in on this topic in the comments below!

When You Don’t Know What to Say

I recently lost my parents to COVID and experienced a whole new level of grief. It’s been hard, but I am so grateful that my parents did not have to suffer for very long.

Grief is a strange thing – some days it’s overwhelming, while others it’s a dull, quiet pain that hovers beneath the surface of “normal.”

As ministers, we prepare the best we can to help others through the circumstances of life. More often than we would like, this involves dealing with devastating loss.

I don’t know about you, but no one ever taught me how to grieve. No one ever taught me how to minister to others who are grieving. And although I’ve always done my best, I didn’t realize how much I still had to learn until I walked this road myself.

Even with the things I have learned, I still don’t have all the answers. What works for me may not work for others and vice versa. However, there are a few things that we can all do differently to be more effective in loving others through their pain.

In this video, I discuss some things that have been said to me that were not helpful, as well as some things that were. I also make a few suggestions of things we can say or do when walking through grief with someone.

The most important thing to remember is that we all grieve differently. Not only are our personalities different, but no two situations are exactly the same. I lost my parents after they had had a long, full life together. Some lose parents when they are much younger. Sometimes parents lose children. Even when situations seem the same, there is always something different. Sometimes dealing with loss will be easier, but it is never easy.

As we journey through heartache with others, the best thing we can do is give them the gift of presence. After all, it’s not about making ourselves feel better about their grief – it’s about loving them and being there for them in whatever capacity they need.

Romans 12:15 says, “Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” (ESV) There is our answer. Presence.

They Said I Was Crazy

Anxiety has become quite the buzz word lately, and with good reason. People are standing up and sharing their stories in hopes that mental health will cease to be a taboo topic. As Christians and ministers, we need to do our part to help remove the shame around such a sensitive topic.

But what happens when anxiety masks a deeper problem? Madai McCain was diagnosed with anxiety, but she knew in her spirit that the panic attacks, depression, anger, and fear were more than just clinical anxiety. Even after being told she was crazy, Madai kept looking for answers. Find out what happened in this interview on Silently Bleeding.

*Anxiety is a real problem for many, and while many others may have similar experiences to Madai’s, we here at Silently Bleeding are not saying that this is the norm. Anxiety can be caused by many things, and we believe God inspires doctors for a reason. However, doctors are still human and fallible, and sometimes we need another opinion. Above all, God is in control and we can trust Him to get us through every trial.

When Sheep Bite

All of us have been on the receiving end of harsh words. But what happens when those harsh words come from people that are a part of your ministry? And how do you heal from wounds caused by people who should know better?

In When Sheep Bite, Stacy Hockenbury shares how devastating it can be when church members verbally attack.

Even if you have never found yourself in a similar situation, Stacy’s transparency regarding dealing with emotional wounds is encouraging and inspiring. You can find this interview and more on the Silently Bleeding YouTube channel.

When God Calls

We are excited and honored to have Susan Pippin, writer and Presbyter for Credentialed Ladies for Pen FL, share this guest post with us today.

Ladies, did you know that God has created a specific purpose for your life? The calling He has placed on each one of us is unique and vital, and it is our responsibility to follow where that calling leads.

God’s plan for our lives and our ministries will not always be easy.

“If I say, ‘I will not mention Him, or speak any more in His name,’ there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot.”

Jeremiah 20:9 ESV

Sometimes we may be tempted to give up – just like Jeremiah was in the above passage – but God’s call on our life can give us the strength we need to keep pressing on.

According to Acts 2:17, we are all called – male and female, old and young. We may be tempted to think that as pastors’ wives and female pastors that we have a lesser call, but it is important for us to understand the equality of the call. God designed it so that we can work hand in hand with our male counterparts – whether that be our husband or other pastors on our ministry team.

And ladies, we are pursuing that call! The number of female pastors in our mainline denominations has doubled over the past ten years.

Yes, ladies, we have been given an inheritance and we must fulfill that call.

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”

Ephesians 2:10 ESV

God has given each one of us women unique abilities for ministry in His kingdom work, and your voice matters!

What is God calling you to today?

Following A Legend

In the Parable of the Talents, Jesus shared the importance of being faithful in the little things. He showed us that when we are obedient to follow God’s leading in situations that seem unimportant, He rewards that by bringing us to bigger responsibilities and blessings.

In Following A Legend, Dr. Teresa Conlon shares how God brought her and her husband from a small church in Canada to Times Square Church in New York City. She explains what it was like working with a legend like Pastor David Wilkerson (author of The Cross and the Switchblade) and his wife Gwen, and revealed how God opened doors of opportunity for herself and her husband as they walked in obedience to God’s will.

I am so grateful for Teresa’s transparency in this interview, as well as her ability to display so clearly how God works in and through us, all while maintaining an attitude of humility. This woman is the real deal.

You can find the interview with Dr. Teresa Conlon here. Remember that you can listen to the interviews on Silently Bleeding while you cook, clean, drive, etc.