Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Some Are Falling but Others Are Standing by Grace
From priests to pastors, teachers to celebrities, mayors to judges, senators to presidents, leaders are falling into sexual scandals. When will this sobering trend end?
With all of their inspiring talents, leaders are great gifts to the people they serve. However, it is obvious that great talent doesn't keep you from great falls. The public and church members must not be naïve to this.
Rising popularity and power give rise to greater temptations. Personal power can intoxicate some to abuse their influence. Therefore, we need to reject the notion that there are such things as private personal scandals for public officials and church leaders. Private indiscretions are the very stuff of public scandals.
To protect pastors from the pervasive dangers of sexual enticement and the temptation to cover up their failures with lies, we need to encourage them to seek more not less accountability. What good does it do to try to install a sprinkler system after your house has already burned to the ground. Churches need to take preventative steps before the raging flames of sexual temptation singe their church. Pastors are great gifts to the church (Eph. 4:11-12), but they have flaws; and when these are ignored, we all lose.
Here are some tips. Encourage your church to develop a policy concerning leaders and porn. What will your church do if it comes to light that one of your pastors has a porn addiction? What will you do if a Sunday School teacher acknowledges that they have a problem and ask for help? Here are two great resources your church should know about. The first is Covenant Eyes. It is an accountability software that monitors Internet use and emails reports to people you select. Their filter service also blocks objectionable websites from your computer. For example, Christian colleges use Covenant Eyes to keep their students accountable with their Internet choices. I love it because it makes you think before you click and therefore helps a vulnerable Christian develop the discipline to flee temptation rather than yield to it. Encourage your church to acquire this software.
The second great resource is Safe Families. This is a one-stop treasure-trough of resources to help you, your family and ministry combat sexual temptation. It has a host of recommended resources, books, insightful articles, educational power point presentations and on and on.
While Satan has seemingly put temptation all around us, God always makes a way of escape for those who seek it (1 Cor. 10:13). Prepare now before the attack comes. Equip yourself, your family and ministry to be overcomers.