Ministry can be tough. No, ministry is tough! One survey of pastors shows some of our challenges…
- 84 percent say they’re on call 24-hours a day
- 80 percent expect conflict in their church
- 54 percent find the role of pastor frequently overwhelming
In the next two blogs I want us to talk about what every pastor and spouse needs. Let’s start with three and I’ll share three more next week.
- We need encouragement: If you’ve been in ministry for very long, you probably have a stack of letters or emails that are full of “suggestions” on how to make you, your family or the church better. While we all need to be open to honest feedback, sometimes it feels overwhelming or at least overwhelmingly negative! We desperately need hope and support.
“Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness…” (Hebrews 3:13)
- We need trusted friends: Ministry can be rather lonely. Some people treat us differently. Either they put us on a pedestal or they don’t quite know how to relate to us. The truth is, we have been hurt by people and we tend to put a protective barrier around us. Lonely leaders are susceptible to feelings of sadness and isolation but friends bring joy and energy. Ask God to bring one or two trusted friends. This may be another person who is in ministry.
“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” (Prov. 27:17)
- We need harmony in the home: When we were first married, I was home only two or three nights out of the week. We were busy with all sorts of church activities. The only “dates” we went on were church-related activities. Linda felt neglected and one day, in frustration said, “It seems like church is your mistress.” That was a wake-up call for us. We got help. I learned that I minimized Linda and she learned that her nagging drove us apart. Do what it takes to protect your marriage and family!
“However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” (Ephesians 5:33)
BEFORE YOU GO…
Have you experienced any of this in your ministry? What would you add to this list?