“I wish I could go with you,” I said wistfully, kissing my husband goodbye one evening as he headed to our church’s music rehearsal, remembering the times before kids that we’d gone together. I also recalled the Sunday mornings when we’d stop for coffee before arriving early at church to rehearse prior to the service. Remembered the delight of being with other believers on the music team, the joy of looking out and seeing other enthusiastic worshippers in the congregation, and the joy of serving together.
I missed it. Missed serving the Lord with my husband.
Now I stay home on music rehearsal nights putting our twin toddlers to bed. Alone. Typically three Sunday mornings a month I wrestle the boys into their car seats and head off to church. Alone.
I had prepared myself mentally for stepping down from the music team when my twins were born and was surprised there wasn’t more of an internal struggle when the time finally came. After all, I’d been involved in music at church since the age of 13. From singing special music on a regular basis to being involved in the special holiday productions, it was just what I did. For 19 years I’d been doing music for every church I was ever apart of. It was my niche. It was how I served and what I loved. When the boys were first born, being so distracted by feedings and the other things that needed to be done during the church service, I didn’t really mind it.
But now my boys were older. Surely there was some way to rejoin the team! I began plotting how this could happen. Other women with kids my boys’ age were able to be part of the music ministry at times. But then most of them didn’t have a husband that was part of the team too, especially to the degree and responsibility my husband was. Even while grasping at ways to make it work, I knew it wouldn’t materialize at this point in our lives.
Becoming discontent I knew my mindset needed readjusting. At the same time, I didn’t want to deal with it. I didn’t want my husband to know how jealous I was to be back on the team with him. Being ashamed of my feelings, I instead buried them for the time being.
Then I listened to a seminar by Julie Kauflin called “Maintaining Priorities In and Around the Worship Team.” Identifying with the speaker and finding her message liberating and hopeful, I was relieved to discover so many other women struggle with the same thing! Actually, probably most women with young children could identify with my feelings. Perhaps not in the specific area of music ministry, but in some other area of ministry or activity they once held dear.
It soon became clear that one of the root issues in my heart was pride. I felt like my gifts were ones people needed to know about and didn’t like them being laid to rest for this season. I was afraid that if I didn’t serve on the music ministry again soon, I’d be forgotten forever. It didn’t feel good to be left out. Didn’t God need me?
God showed me that He didn’t need me, actually. At least not in the way I wanted to be needed. Instead He needed me to serve the music ministry through serving my husband. That’s not exactly what I’d been wanting, and again, that was due to pride. I wanted the lime light position. But God was showing me it was my husband who had a large part to play right now, and that I needed to serve him.
You see, when single, the music ministry was very much my ministry. During the early years of marriage, it had become our ministry. Now, God was showing me it really was His ministry that I was privileged to be part of. It was not something one could demand from Him. And now He was offering me a humble position of service that was in the shadows. One that was no longer on stage. It would no longer be serving side by side in the same way my husband and I had done before. Instead, it would be me coming along and being a support to my husband.
So for me, that means letting my husband bounce ideas off of me, or giving input to song selections when asked. It means listening to what he’s planning on sharing and giving feedback. It means going to church alone—again—so that my husband is freed up to do what he’s called to do in this season.
I wish I could say there’s no longer a struggle with pride in this area. That I prefer holding wiggling kids to singing on stage. That I’m not jealous when other mom’s with young kids get an opportunity to be part of the music ministry and I don’t. But that’s not true. It’s still a struggle, some Sundays more than others. But God is doing a work in my heart to make me more like Him.
Now, kissing my husband goodbye as he heads out to a music rehearsal, I’ve come to realize I’m serving not only my husband, but also God. In this small act of sacrifice—done with humble joy—I’m worshiping God in a whole new way. Not on stage, but in my heart.
Welcome to Ungrind!
Do you want to be inspired, motivated, and equipped to live the everyday story of your life well?
If so, you’re in the right place. Whether you need encouragement in your relationships or in your faith, I hope you’ll find the transparent voices of mentors and friends here at Ungrind.
So, grab a cup of coffee and keep reading. We're so glad you're here!
Ashleigh Slater, Founder & Managing Editor
Get Our Free Ebook!
To Those Who Want To Be Truly Happy: Stop Chasing Happiness
Chasing happiness isn't all it's cracked up to be. Here are a few reasons why.
How the Psalms Speak to Our Emotions
The Psalms is a book that's rich with the reality of what life's like in this fallen world. Here are...
3 Ways to Navigate Personality Differences
Sometimes personality differences can wear on us. Here are three ways we can navigate them in a loving manner.
Surprised By ‘A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood’
If you haven't seen this film, God may speak to your heart through it in ways you weren't expecting.
The Wedding Ring
Are you struggling in your marriage? Here's how a wedding ring helped one wife fight for her marriage.
5 Ways to Live an Out-of-Control Life
Here are 5 ways to let go of control and trust your present and your future to God.
5 Creative Places to Find Prayer Accountability
Do you want to pray more, but are easily distracted? Here are some practical ways to stay focused.
What Women Are Saying
-- Darlene Schacht, author of Messy Beautiful Love: Hope and Redemption for Real-Life Marriages and co-author of Reshaping it All: Motivation for Spiritual and Physical Fitness
"Real life is not always pleasant. Every marriage experiences disappointments, misunderstandings, sickness and financial crisis. Ashleigh doesn’t camouflage the pain in her own marriage, and offers practical ideas on how to walk through the difficulties and find intimacy on the journey. If you are anything like me, I predict that as you read, you too will find yourself laughing, wiping tears, and saying 'Oh, yes.'"
-- Gary Chapman, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The 5 Love Languages
We are a member of the Amazon affiliate program and regularly use affiliate links. If you purchase an item from an Amazon link we provide, we will receive a small referral commission. This doesn’t cost you anything additional. We only share books, music, and products that our writers personally have used and highly recommend.
Faith4 years ago
When Doing Justly, Loving Mercy, and Walking Humbly Stand at Odds
Motherhood4 years ago
Surviving a Strong-Willed Child
Faith5 years ago
7 Ways to Create A Family Altar
Friendship6 years ago
Beyond the Registry: The Ultimate Gift Guide for Expectant Parents
Relationships8 months ago
5 Ways to Teach Your Child to Hear God
Marriage6 years ago
4 Reasons I’m Not Facebook Friends With My Husband
Everyday Faith5 years ago
6 Simple Ways to Give Thanks in the Thick of It
Articles6 years ago
10 Ways Life is Like a Box of Chocolates
Articles7 years ago
How to Lift Up the One You Love
Articles6 years ago
Relationships1 year ago
Facing Our Motherhood Fears
Digging Into Scripture5 months ago
How the Psalms Speak to Our Emotions