My understanding has always been that from a reformed perspective, we would say that a wife and your children while in your home are your first ministry. If you do not take care of them first your ministry will inevitably suffer (obviously God could give you a thriving ministry despite anything you do or don't do). Although I am Covenantal and Confessional in theology, I am currently attending a Reformed South Baptist church in the county I live (it is the closest thing I have to my beliefs). My Pastor on Sunday and again in my meeting today claimed that your ministry must come first and before your wife. He says people have told him before that your wife must come first, but he says he just doesn't see that in Scripture. I imagine he uses verses like Luke 14:26 "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple." To me Jesus is talking about extended family here. I also think this is in the context that you can't let your family let you from loving the Church and being faithful in ministry. 1 Timothy 3:5 says "for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church?" What kind of example are we setting for people if we love others more than our own wife? I believe that we must at times sacrifice great things, and sometimes that will include time with family. But I don't see a good argument that would allow us to say ministry comes before our wife. Is not our wife our first ministry? I'm only 24, I recognize that I have only been married two years. Would love to hear your thoughts. Thanks!