God's Girl

Finding the extraordinary in the ordinary

Moms in Ministry: Janey Pitts

Today I will be starting a two part Moms in Ministry Interview.

If you are not a Mom in Ministry, there are still wonderful tips in both interviews on how to support your local families who serve in ministry.

Today I would like to welcome Janey Pitts.

Janey, please tell us about your family, yourself, and your profession.

My name is Janey Pitts. I have been married to my favorite person on the planet, Cory, for almost 18 years. We have two amazing children, a boy who is almost 14, and a girl who is 11. I have been working with students in various capacities for the past 22 years, and am currently the Student Pastor at New Work Fellowship in Hopkinsville, Ky. My husband is the Teaching Pastor at the same church. I have an undergrad degree in journalism from Samford University, and a Masters from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. I also am a blogger at www.JaneyPItts.com where I focus on helping people see the Bible in a very applicable way.

1) What is the most rewarding thing about being a mom in ministry?

The most rewarding thing about being a mom in ministry is probably the same thing as being a mom not in ministry. I love when my kids apply the Bible to situations they are dealing with in their lives. I love when I hear them quote scripture, or sing worship songs. I love seeing their heart for God played out in their relationships with people. It is a bonus getting to be with my son at youth events, and next year, my daughter will be there too. Although my son and I usually don’t talk at youth events – I don’t want to cramp his style, of course!

2) What is one of the biggest challenges?

There are several large challenges in ministry as a mom. First, time can be a challenge. There are times when ministry needs seem to be at a high. It taps into family time, and can steal hours, and even days from your family if not guarded. I am called to minister, but that calling first starts at home. Sometimes when something major happens that order is trumped, but you have to gage it carefully. Another challenge is that some people – very few really – immediately judge kids as “pastors kids” meant in a negative light. I think this is less prevalent now than say 20 years ago, but it still exists. I have learned the people who are verbally judging mine or other pastors kids are the ones who have trouble with their own and are looking to take the attention off of their family. It still is hard when you know that is going on, but I try to keep my eyes on Jesus and know that they are the ones hurting.

3) If you were sitting across from a new mom in ministry what would you tell her?

Make sure your kids see you read your Bible at home. Make sure you pray with them, and practice what you preach. Kids who see this don’t rebel later to the whole “church” thing. Being a Christian is a way of life. You need to live it all the time because you want to, not because you have to. And it’s good for your kids to see you fail sometimes. You’re going to lose it. They will at some point make you crazy. Apologize, and let them see God’s grace in your life. We’re not called to be perfect, we are called to be obedient.

4) How can others best support you as you fill both roles?

Pray for us. As a minister, I am privy to lots of things I wish I wasn’t sometimes. The weight of ministry can take its toll, and it plays out emotionally at home. My patience may be less. My nerves may be frayed. The power of prayer – and knowing folks care enough to pray – is huge. Verbal encouragement is a biggie, too. And sometimes just an honest hug and “How ya doing” means the world, even if I can’t tell you about all that is going on with others and their burdens that I am helping carry.

5) What is one thing you wish someone would have told you about being a MIM?

How fantastic it is. I had no idea how much fun it is and continues to be when my kids are in my area of ministry. I can see their “ah-ha” moments even when they don’t know I’m watching. I get to hear comments they make that are awesome. I get to watch them live their life with their peers and see that side of them.

6) Who or what have been your biggest influences? Who or what is shaping you into the mother you will be tomorrow?

A man named Poker Boyd who started www.smeonline.net is amazing. My husband interned under him as a college student, and he and his wife have helped mold both of us in ministry. Sometimes when ministry is hard, I’ll ask myself “What would Poker do?” and then proceed from there. As far as shaping me as a mom, I have the best mom and mother in law a girl could ask for. They both have very different strengths and I get a double bonus getting to draw knowledge from both of their experiences.

7) What one thing would your children want other MIMs to know about being a child of a MIM?

It’s actually fun having your mom be in charge of a ministry you are involved in. (Wow! Who knew!?!)

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