Monday, November 06, 2006

Pastors and sin

If you have been following the news you will know that last week the leader of the Association of Evangelicals- Pastor Ted Haggard was accused and admitted to charges of sexual immorality, and illegal drug involvement. Ted Haggard was the pastor at a mega-church of over 14,000 people. The news of this story has rocked the Christian Church here in America. How could such a prominent and popular leader and pastor be a hypocrite? You can read a response letter written by Haggard on New Life's Website.

As I think about this story, I can't help but revisit the truth that Christians all too often idolize our leaders. How is it that we think our pastors and leaders are somehow more holy and pure than we are? The truth of the matter is, they are human just as much as any other person on the planet.

How has this story affected you? How does this change (if at all) your view of pastors and Christian leaders?

Being a pastor myself, I am constantly having to check my motives and struggles so that I can be an effective role model for the teens I minister to. I think it's important to remember that even pastors need accountability and transparency in their lives (maybe even more than the average Christian).

As I read the letter Haggard wrote, something he said stood out to me. He mentioned that when he stopped talking about his struggles and kept them to himself is when he was given over to them.

When I stopped communicating about my problems, the darkness increased and finally dominated me. As a result, I did things that were contrary to everything I believe.

It's important to remember the necessity of transparency and accountability as a Christian leader. When we start to be secretive about our struggles is when they can most control and dominate our lives and our ministry.

The moral of the story:

  1. Don't hold your Christian leaders above God - don't let news of a leaders sin drive you away from your faith in God. We need to be careful not to hold our leaders in too high of esteem and we need to make sure that they have accountability in their lives.
  2. If you are struggling with something - any sin at all, you need to tell someone about it. The Christian life was never meant to be lived solo.

1 comment:

  1. Yea, I heard about that. Very good point; I think that Christians somehow believe that pastors and other leaders of the church are somehow supposed to be "better" than the rest of us. What we don't realize is that they're human too, and we all make mistakes. If anything, I think that sometimes their struggles can be even harder, because when you're a pastor you have that pressure to be a good role model. I think that if that pressure didn't exist then we probably wouldn't have so many issues with church leadership today. As far as changing my mind about how I think of pastors / Christians, I think this is something I was already aware of...but it was very thought-provoking.