Praying with a godly fear for pastors who fall…

Social media lit up today with the sad news of the moral failure of Pastor Tullian Tchividjian, the grandson of Billy Graham.

Here is the official statement from Corral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, FL. 

A good friend of mine asked me how I can continue to work with, counsel and love on pastors with what seems like one after another moral failure hitting the news, not unlike what happen to Pastor Tullian.

Well, all I can say is that I continue to love pastors and believe Kingdom work can be a wonderful service to the Lord, and to others.  And although I am not impressed or awed by pastors — well, maybe a very few — I really do want pastors to succeed in the kingdom work to which God has called them.  As pastors go, so really, in so many ways, go churches in America and the millions of lives touched by pastors whose lives they intersect.

To be honest, these kinds of failures, though incredibly sad, don’t surprise me.  Money, Sex and power have an incredible draw and temptation, and some pastors, who feel especially called to, well, “save” people, are especially vulnerable to these kinds of temptations, although many would most likely vehemently deny that to your face.   I’m deeply grateful to have earned the right to be heard by a number of pastors, and let’s just say, they all really do need our prayers!  They really, really need our prayers. 100 percent of the pastors I know are perfect examples of God making a straight blow with a crooked stick.  And I’d add that the chief crooked stick among them is the one writing this blog entry!

Let’s just be totally frank.  All pastors and Christian leaders are vulnerable, not to speak of those already snagged and in deep trouble, deeply fearing there is no way out.  Some are yet to tell their spouse or someone they hope they can trust and they are desperately scared of now being caught.  Truthfully, most will be caught.  I hope they are.

So friends, this is very serious business.  Like it or not, the devil does prowl around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour (I Peter 5:8).

Still, as director of Pastor-to-Pastor Initiatives, I press on with joy … loving pastors and leaders, praying for for them, listening well, asking deep and important questions (I hope), asking the Lord what he wants me to say to pastors when I meet with them, and, well, encouraging the 50 pastors I am now working with to stay at their post until the Lord calls them elsewhere. 

Knowing that the pastors and leaders I meet with need my love more than they need my judgment, I’ll just add that I certainly agree with @ScottyWardSmith:

When a leader falls, the best thing it can create is godly fear in each of us, not worldly gossip among all of us

— Scotty Smith (@ScottyWardSmith) June 22, 2015

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