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Lisa Chan Discusses Being a Pastor’s Wife

I was happy to catch a few minutes to chat with upcoming Defined by God speaker Lisa Chan. Lisa has been married to pastor, speaker, and writer Francis Chan for 18 years. I asked Lisa about some of the struggles pastors’ wives face.

Was Francis a pastor when you first married him?

Yes, he was working with a church. The church had gone through a terrible time, and there was a split with the senior pastor. We left on our honeymoon thinking maybe he would take over temporarily at that church, but in two months’ time, Francis felt like, “You know what, I think God wants us to start our own church and for me to really head out and lead.” And so Cornerstone was founded after two months of marriage.

What’s the biggest challenge pastors’ wives face today?

That’s an interesting question. I think one of the biggest challenges is authenticity. It’s so easy to slide into a position or a title and find your identity in that instead of being an authentic, godly woman—one pursuing Christ, walking in step with the spirit, and focused on what he wants, rather than what people want or think. We all know that’s part of the territory, but if you can learn to keep your eyes forward and on Christ, you can learn how to deal with it in a better way.

What advice would you give to pastors’ wives who are struggling with authenticity and feeling like they have to fit into a mold that other people put them in?

I think the best way is to not spend too much time thinking about it—usually if we focus on the problem, it just gets bigger and bigger. But if we turn our focus and choose to say, “No, I’m going to go after Christ, I’m going to grow in my walk with God, I’m going to learn to listen to his voice and do the things he asks me to do”—that’s really the only answer. And I know it seems really oversimplified, but sometimes our biggest problems have very simple answers. That would be my biggest advice—just follow after God and that’s what it’s all about.

My husband gives this illustration that if you’re learning to be a mountain-bike rider, you have to look where you want to go. In other words, if you look where you don’t want to go, like the cliff or rut, your bike will automatically go where you don’t want to go. So to stay on the right path, you look at where you want to go. And so for us, as pastors’ wives, let’s not look at this big cesspool of “Oh people expect so much of me, and this is so terrible”—you’re going to go that way—but if you just say “I’m going to be a women of God, a child of God after him,” all the other stuff falls into place because you’re just following after God.

What will you be speaking on at the Defined by God conference, and how will it help pastors’ wives?

I’m pretty sure that I’m going to be speaking about having a steadfast love, and I’m going to be sharing a lot that I’m saying here; I want to refocus and resimplify because we tend to overcomplicate, and I know that’s my tendency, and the Lord is just showing me how much I need to step back and simplify and do the next step that’s right in front of me. What does God have for me right now, today? I don’t want to worry so much about the future and get ahead of myself.

What would you say to women who are thinking about coming but are on the fence?

I know that as pastors wives, we hear a lot of messages—maybe sometimes we get to attend some with our husbands, we’re listening, we’re reading, so sometimes it can feel like it’s just gonna be one more thing on our plates. But I think the uniqueness of this is that it will be just pastors’ wives instead of a women’s conference or couples’ retreat, and so to me, that’s the fun of this. Wow, we’re all very like-minded, we have the same struggles, the same desires, husbands who are in the same place in ministry, and so there’s camaraderie and the ability to feel united with so many women who are in the same place. And I’m just asking women to consider how much of a blessing it is to come together with other women to understand exactly where you’re at.

Come see Lisa and more fantastic speakers at the Defined by God conference in San Diego, CA,  November 1–3.

Register now for FREE!

Come to the Faithlife Women Conference—FREE!

We have exciting news!

You may have heard about the new Faithlife Women Conference that Logos and groups like Compassion International are putting on in September. Faithlife Women is shaping up to be a once-in-a-lifetime event, and with today’s announcement, it’s getting even better: we’ve worked out a partnership to make the conference FREE to the first 2,500 attendees! If you can get to Dallas September 6–8, you can hear from Faithlife Women’s outstanding speakers and authors completely free of charge.

We have an amazing lineup scheduled for you. You’ll hear Angela Thomas reveal what the Bible says about joy, listen to Liz Curtis Higgs discuss grace, and be blessed by Dr. Lois Evans’ unveiling of Psalm 91’s “secret place.” Those are just a few standouts among many terrific speakers and workshops.

Not only will you experience first-rate ministry—you’ll be edified by worship from Gwen Smith and music by the acclaimed Robbie Seay Band.

But that’s not all.

Want to get backstage at the conference? We’re giving away an exclusive lunch with some of our speakers! We’ll choose two women (both of whom can bring a friend) to share this special luncheon with Liz Curtis Higgs, Kasey Van Norman, Arlene Pellicane, Leslie Vernick, Elyse Fitzpatrick, Kendra Smiley, and Gwen Smith. Get in on the contest now.

Save your place!

Registration is still required, and seats are going fast. Register for free at FaithlifeWomen.com/conference and get your tickets today.

P.S. Share this post on Facebook, tweet it, text your girlfriends, email the women at church, call your mom—tell everyone you know about the Faithlife Women Conference.

Pastors’ Wives Conference: Get Refreshed

Being a pastor’s wife comes with its own unique set of challenges:

  • You’re expected to be a perfect wife and parent (even though you’re only human).
  • You’re expected to model hospitality (even when you don’t feel hospitable).
  • You do a lot of behind-the-scenes work (that goes unnoticed).
  • Your husband’s job often keeps him away from home (with office hours, meetings, visits, and emergencies).

Sometimes getting away to relax, get refreshed, and reconnect with Jesus makes all the difference. Join like-minded pastors’ wives in San Diego for a weekend of faith and fun!

If your husband works in ministry, the Defined by God conference is the perfect opportunity for you to recharge your battery and connect with others who understand the challenges you face.

For the November 1–3 conference, Logos has brought together top speakers from around the world to discuss topics like refining your romance, battling isolation, praying for your husband and the church, balancing your family and ministry, and so much more.

Hear from speakers like:

Amy Groeschel

Amy Groeschel is the wife of Pastor Craig Groeschel of Oklahoma’s lifechurch.tv. She and Craig have six wonderful children, and they are thoroughly enjoying their mission “to lead people to become fully devoted followers of Christ.” Amy advocates social progress, including the eradication of human trafficking and poverty. She is the coauthor and teacher of a four-part discipleship Bible study entitled SOAR.

Jani Ortlund

Jani Ortlund, executive vice president of Renewal Ministries, loves connecting women with the Word of God. Her chief passion in life is serving Jesus Christ through writing, speaking, and discipling. Jani and her husband, Ray—pastor of Immanuel Church—have four married children and seven grandchildren, and they minister in Nashville, Tennessee.

Lisa Chan

Lisa has been married to Francis Chan for 18 wonderful years. He was the founding pastor of Cornerstone Church in Simi Valley, CA, where he served for 16 years before God called their family to new adventures in India, Thailand, China, and—currently—inner-city San Francisco. Francis and Lisa enjoy serving alongside their five kids and hope to expand their family through adoption very soon.

Lauren Chandler

Lauren Chandler is a wife and a mother of three. She is passionate about making much of Christ through writing and singing music, leading worship, blogging, and speaking. Lauren and her husband, Matt, have overcome tremendous challenges, beginning with the November 2009 discovery of a malignant tumor in Matt’s brain. The Lord has been infinitely merciful, providing peace and comfort in uncertainty as well as joy in times of victory and healing.

Go to faithlifewomen.com/definedbygod to register, or call our sales team at 1-800-875-6467. We’ll see you at the Defined by God conference!

Not a Pastor’s Wife but Looking to Get Away?

Join us September 6–8 in Dallas, TX, for the Faithlife Women conference! Enrich your walk with well-known speakers like Liz Curtis HiggsCarol KentAngela Thomas, and Arlene Pellicane. Register now!

Enrich Your Walk at the Faithlife Women Conference

Need an opportunity to get away with girlfriends and strengthen your faith? Looking for a Mother’s Day gift that will have you and your mom digging through the Bible together?

The Faithlife Women conference is bringing together acclaimed speakers to talk about issues like love, family, marriage, and hope. Join us September 6–8 in Dallas, TX, and learn practical, life-changing truth straight from Scripture.

Speakers include:

Angela Thomas

Angela has authored 11 books, including the bestsellers Do You Think I’m Beautiful, My Single Mom Life, and When Wallflowers Dance. Angela ignites passion for knowing God by using her life experiences to teach scriptural principles.

Liz Curtis Higgs

Liz is the author of 28 books, including the bestselling Bad Girls of the Bible series. She’s an award-winning columnist for Today’s Christian Woman. Liz has also written articles for Faith and Friends, Woman Alive, and Enhance. More than 4,000 churches nationwide are using her video Bible study series, Loved by God.

Dr. Lois Evans

Dr. Evans divides her service between Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship Church and the National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) Board of Directors, the Dallas Baptist University Woman’s Auxiliary Board, the NRB Television Board, and The Urban Alternative Board of Directors. She has authored a number of books, including Seasons of a Woman’s Life and Stones of Remembrance.

And don’t miss powerful worship times with a unique artist:

Gwen Smith

Gwen Smith inspires women toward the heart of God through stories, songs, and Scripture. She is the author of Broken into Beautifulwhich shares a title with the heart-stirring song that she cowrote and recorded. Her latest CD, Uncluttered, was released in early 2011.

For a limited time, we’ll be offering the conference at a discounted rate of $79. After May 21, the price goes up to $99.

Go to faithlifewomen.com/live to register, or call our sales team at 1-800-875-6467! We’ll see you at the Faithlife Women Conference!

Register Today for Pastorum Live

Calling all pastors—are you ready for a two-day voyage into the Word that will transform your ministry?

You’ll want to set aside June 5–6 to attend Pastorum Live, the first Bible study conference presented by Logos Bible Software, at Park City Church in downtown Chicago, IL.

Pastorum Live will bring together 21 scholars from leading Bible colleges and seminaries who will use their expertise to enrich and inform your scriptural study through the original languages of the Bible. By examining the Greek and Hebrew behind our English translations, you’ll be equipped to go deeper into the Word for Bible study, sermon preparation, and teaching.

The twenty speakers include:

Dr. Scot McKnight—Author of over 30 books on the historical Jesus, the New Testament, and early Christianity, including The Jesus Creed: Loving God, Loving Others, a 2005 Christianity Today book of the year. Dr. McKnight will be teaching on “The Sermon on the Mount as Gospel.”

Dr. John Walton—Expert of the culture and literature of the Old Testament and the ancient Near East. He’s authored and edited many books, including the 5-volume Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary: Old Testament and is on the editorial board for The New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis (Zondervan). Dr. Walton will be teaching on finding “Meaning in Biblical Vocabulary: Use and Abuse of Word Studies.”

Dr. Craig Evans—Former director of the graduate program in biblical studies at Trinity Western University, where he founded the Dead Sea Scrolls Institute. He specializes in the historical Jesus, synoptic Gospels, the Dead Sea Scrolls, the use of the Old Testament in the New Testament, and New Testament background. Dr. Evans will be teaching on ”The Dead Sea Scrolls and New Testament Christology.

Dr. Peter Enns—Dr. Peter Enns is a biblical scholar, author, speaker, and teacher. Dr. Enns has taught courses at five seminaries (Westminster, Princeton, Fuller, Biblical, and Lutheran/Philadelphia) and three universities (Harvard, Eastern, and Temple); he currently teaches at Eastern University. He has written or edited 14 books, including Inspiration and Incarnation: Evangelicals and the Problem of the Old Testament, The Evolution of Adam: What the Bible Does and Doesn’t Say about Human Origins, and commentaries on Exodus and Ecclesiastes.

Check out the full itinerary.

Keep watching Pastorum.com/live for more information on lecture titles and topics!

Save $50 by registering now for only $149. The discounted registration price will go up to $199 on March 10, so register now to ensure your spot at the best rate.

You don’t want to miss this event. Create a healthier church, improve your ministry, and enrich your personal Bible study by learning how to dig deeper into the Scriptures.

We’ll see you at Pastorum Live!