The First Lady

There is a creature called "The First Lady", who is she? I want to examine this in the light of the Word of God.

She is the wife of a pastor, senior pastor of a local assembly, usually, but not always, a large congregation. The pastor is the founder of the organization if it is an independent church, and hence the chief decision maker. If it is part of a denomination or a network, he has either been voted in by a board or appointed by an overseer. This type of congregation has multiple departments, sub-groupings or ministries. Each has it own leader but they are all answerable to the senior pastor who in most cases asks them to lead.

This first lady is presented as the pastor's support and is very much involved in one of the ministries. She is supposed to act as a role model for all the other wives in the assembly and a mentor of the up and coming young ladies. She must always be well groomed- fully made-up, manicured and pedicured; always modestly dressed in the best finery; always smiling and ready to be a shoulder for any aching soul. Her children may not be well-behaved but they too are always well groomed and attired. They attend the best schools and are afforded privileges that other children may not be able to access.

Many persons who wish to find favour with the pastor, try to court her as an ally. It also works the other way around. If she knows that there is some decision her husband wants to make that may not be favourable, she strategizes with some key member whom she knows can influence the others.

Much more can be said, but I want to go to the Word of God. Firstly, I couldn't find any scripture that dealt specifically with the wife of the pastor! What? No First Lady? I Timothy 3: 11 seems to give some requirements for the wives of deacons but Bible scholars state that it is questionable whether wives or female deacons were meant. Since there are no descriptives for the wives of bishops, reason will go with the latter. Why will Paul list criteria for the wives of deacons and not that of bishops?

The letter to Titus (Chapter 2, verses 3-5) on the other hand gives standards of behaviour for all women. This is the principle of the Word of God. We are not to have respect of persons. Yes, we must honour our leaders, those who watch for our souls, but we are not to set them on pinnacles of glorification. We must not demand from them more than they can give.

So who's the first lady?

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