Jen Wilkin is a wife, mom to four great kids, and an advocate for women to love God with their minds through the faithful study of His Word. We wanted to give you a peek into her life before the conference (in just TWO DAYS!) with a fun virtual "sit-down" Q&A. Enjoy!
What do you like to do for fun?
I like cooking, gardening and reading. I also like Downton Abbey and Sherlock.
What books/music are you currently into?
Music: I love the Avett Brothers and Sara Bareilles. Also Coldplay and Mumford & Sons. But I don't listen to music very often. Books: I like historical fiction and the classics, but I'm not currently reading anything. I'm buried in commentaries at the moment, but when summer hits I plan to read East of Eden.
What do you like to cook when you are at home?
Some of our favorites are paella, etouffee, and a roasted chicken recipe I sort of made up. I'm also crazy about soups, so we have those a lot. I recently discovered a homemade roll recipe that is killer, so none of our pants fit.
What is your personal motto or favorite verse?
Psalm 111:10 "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom."
What is your favorite shade of nail polish?
Definitely coral. My daughters are always trying to push me toward turquoise, but I still like coral the best.
How did you and your husband meet?
We met in speech communications class my senior year of college. He got a B, I got an A. We didn't start dating until a year later, but we had such a deep friendship by then that the marriage thing was an obvious good idea.
As an author and speaker, what is your philosophy on work/life balance – puzzle-piecing the pursuit of your passions with the ever-present needs of your husband and four kids?
My mentor once told me, "If the opportunity doesn't work for your family, it doesn't work for you." This thought has helped me sift through the various demands of ministry without carrying the burden that every opportunity needs me. My family needs me. They're my primary ministry. My husband is a huge cheerleader for me as a teacher/leader, and as such has been a fully supportive partner when it comes to family responsibilities. Without his support, wisdom and encouragement I would have floundered. He's pretty great.
What is the hardest thing about being you?
Right now, it's that in a five-year period I will have sent all my babies off to college. We have loved having our kids so close in age (we had four in four years), but it's pretty brutal right now kissing them goodbye one after another.
Why do you think so many women lose sight having ONE life, love, and passion for Jesus?
We are necessarily focused on the day-to-day demands of life, many of which have names and faces. It's easy to forget that we are stewards of those things and relationships, but we are worshippers of God alone. We slip into worshipping our roles or our relationships or our belongings. I believe being "in the world but not of the world" means to hold the daily demands of this life in right perspective, as opportunities to offer acceptable worship to God through our service to others and our stewardship of resources.
How do you see this in your own life?
For me, the red flag is always, "What am I trying to control that I have no business controlling?" That's the indicator that I've begun worshipping something other than God.
What are you hoping will come out of this conference?
I hope we'll all walk away with a renewed appreciation of the simplicity of the call to love God above all else, as well as with some practical help for how to keep that simple call in view.
What would surprise the ONE conference attendees to know about you?
I have never had a cavity.