A couple of weeks ago, one of the high school boys in our youth ministry looked straight at me and said, “You know, Jen, youth pastors’ wives are a lot like superhero sidekicks – you are always there beside the superhero, helping them out and stuff.” At first, I was a little taken-aback. The sidekick? Really? Who wants to be the sidekick? Everyone in their right mind knows that if you have the choice to be Batman or Robin, the answer is always, always Batman. Nobody chooses to be Robin. Nobody.
As a husband and wife team in youth ministry, I have tried very hard to not be seen as just an add-on to Jon’s ministry. I want to be in the battlefield, “fighting” in ministry as a superhero with him. I don’t want to be overlooked. I don’t want to be brushed to the side. And I definitely, definitely, definitely don’t want to be seen as Robin.
But, in all of my efforts not to snap back pridefully about being seen as Robin, God’s still small voice echoed inside my head and in my heart. To this student, Robin wasn’t just a brushed aside afterthought, he was a great help and comrade to Batman. To this student, Batman couldn’t do it alone, but needed Robin beside him (probably to make sure he had everything in his utility belt…or had the right directions to get back to the Bat Cave). Batman is more than likely able to get by on his own and be just fine, but somewhere along the line, he decided it was better have someone beside him in the superhero journey. He chose, instead of doing all of the fighting on his own, to have Robin by his side.
I’m glad that this student sees my husband as a Superhero, because that is just what he is. He sets aside his own ambitions and pride to serve the students and minister to the people of our community. He fights hard and prays even harder, and chooses me as his sidekick to fight beside him in the crazy world of youth ministry. Robin is a necessary component to Batman’s person and his mission. And you, Stumin Wife, are an extremely rare and important part of your husband’s life and ministry as well.
God knew when he created man, that man couldn’t do it alone. In His infinite wisdom and love, he created woman, because he knew that the two would be stronger together than Adam would have been on his own. Likewise, you are more important and valuable in ministry than you will ever know. Don’t give up fighting alongside your spouse, and don’t just take a backseat. Batman needs Robin in the passenger’s seat on the journey with him, and your husband needs you, even in the small, most overlooked, and simplest ways. Don’t question who you are, even if you feel like an overlooked afterthought in ministry. You are important. You are necessary. And you are chosen by God to fight the fight as well.