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Pastors' Wives Retreat

Pastors' Wives Resource site provided by the Sunday School Discipleship Ministries International, a ministry of the Church of the Nazarene. We want to hear about your experiences, the lessons you’ve learned and how God’s Word and prayer supported and sustained you in the joys and challenges of parsonage life.

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Proclaim the power of God, whose majesty is over Israel, whose power is in the skies. You are awesome, O God, in Your sanctuary; the God of Israel gives power and strength to His people. Praise be to God! Ps 68:35

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We want to hear about your experiences, the lessons you’ve learned and how God’s Word and prayer supported and sustained you in the joys and challenges of parsonage life.

All submissions will be reviewed before they are posted.

My Journey to Fulfillment PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joyce Dement   

I grew up in the northeastern part of the United States; my husband grew up in the mid-south. We met at the University of Missouri where I was working as an R.N. and my husband to be was in medical school. Over lunch one day, we shared our Christian faith and our individual involvement in the Christian Medical Society. Within a year, we were married and I was living 1200 miles from my home. At first, that was not a big deal. I had married a wonderfully charismatic, fun-loving, entertaining guy. He made up songs to sing to me. He met me for 2:00 a.m. breaks when I worked night shifts. He cleaned ice from my car windshield in the winter and left romantic notes. I was happy with the love of my life and fulfilled with my own career.

When I became a mother, life was thrilling and I loved my own little family. Soon, it was time for OB-GYN residency for my husband. For the next three years, I saw very little of my mate except when he was sleeping. Between being on call, surgery, clinics, and studying, sleeping was all he got to do at home. I had total responsibility for the children and my own happiness.

I thought life would change after residency. However, developing his practice was important for my husband, and commitment to his career was a high priority. We move ten times in the first ten years of our marriage. I found myself somewhat disillusioned, lonely, and unhappy.

One day during a conversation, my husband gently reminded me I was responsible for my own happiness. His reminder prompted me to read some books about self-esteem, happiness in marriage, self improvement, and so on. After some painful self-evaluation, I developed goals for myself and wrote a statement of purpose for my life. 

Short term goals:

  1. Develop regular Bible reading and prayer habits
  2. Lose weight
  3. Exercise regularly
  4. Foster friendships
  5. Visit my family and friends in Pennsylvania every 6-12 months
  6. Provide a loving, peaceful, and safe home for my family 

Long term goals:

  1. Live a life totally committed to God's will
  2. Have a fulfilling marriage
  3. Raise children who would love the Lord for a lifetime
  4. Travel

Consequently, my dependence on the Lord deepened. I started praying about everything, anywhere. To this day, I love driving on road trips and communicating with God while I'm driving. Renewal and revival times came for me while I was driving to see my mother and dad during their last years.
My desire for intellectual stimulation, need for friends, and goals for my family were all met as I got involved in my children's activities at school and church. Because I was available and interested, I was given opportunities to serve and to provide leadership. As my family grew and matured, the activities changed and brought new challenges to my life. When our youngest son left for college 12 years ago, I returned to a nursing position in a physician’s office. Recently, I interviewed for a hospital position and I am excited about the new challenges that position will bring.

Although we have had to face struggles, temptations, and difficulties, we have had a happy and fulfilling marriage. My husband is a very successful OB-GYN specialist. He is happy because I have found fulfillment. Our children are doing well, serving the Lord with their spouses, and we are blessed with four grandchildren.

God is sufficient!

Joyce Dement is a nurse, mother, and grandmother. She and her husband, Gene, live near Joplin, Missouri.

A note to Pastors' husbands –  

We welcome pastors’ husbands to visit this page and to provide insights into the needs and challenges you face. Let us know how we can minister to you and assist as you fulfill your supportive roles. Send your comments and suggestions to us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Until then, we welcome you to join the discussions and provide resources on this site...Read More

Prayer support –

Each weekday, Sunday School and Discipleship Ministries International (SDMI) meet for prayer. All requests will be presented to the staff, except those identified as confidential. We’ll pray for you, asking God to work and to extend grace and mercy...Read More

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