Tuesday, 11 September 2012
By Roderick Evans
Pastors and other leaders need assistance, as does every Christian. Parishioners have to understand that their leaders are human while understanding that the calling upon their lives demands a greater level of sacrifice and service.
If parishioners have problems and struggles, their leaders will have them also. However, pastors and leaders have to overcome internal and external influences if they are to receive assistance.
In this post, we want to discuss the most common factors that hinder leaders from receiving help: pride, embarrassment, hopelessness, ministry security, and family. Until these influences are removed, leaders will continue to minister while they are in need of ministry.
Pastors and leaders are afraid to appear vulnerable, less spiritual, or “human.” They will not admit that they have a problem because they are supposed to lead. Therefore, leaders believe that to display any signs of imperfection indicate a lack of spirituality or maturity to other clergy or laity.
Fear and feelings of embarrassment have the ability to hinder the pursuit for assistance. If the sin is considered highly immoral, leaders are liable to be selective about what they share. Or, like many, chose to conceal and continue on as if nothing is wrong.
Hopelessness is the silent prison that takes certain leaders captive. They preach and give advice, even though they have lost hope in God and themselves. They minister out of routine, not expecting any results in their own personal lives.
Others do not admit they need help for ministry security. Various religious organizations choose their ministers by the vote or interview rather than by the appointment of denominational leaders. Therefore, they feel pressured into keeping personal issues hidden for fear of losing an appointment or position
One final reason that pastors and leaders do not seek for help is family. Leaders need the comfort of confidentially when resolving hidden issues. Because of their positions, leaders are concerned about their problems being revealed publicly. The strain that it could bring upon family relations could be seemingly irreversible. Thus, leaders choose to deal with their issues alone to spare their family from undue embarrassment, shame, or break up.
The Church as a community has to continue to be willing to protect its leaders, pray for its leaders, and support its leaders.