Confession: Your Pastor’s Private Sins

As a pastor, you must give your wife permission to be your wife and a church member. We tell the wives of our pastors, we expect you to act and serve like any other mature church member at our church. We think mature Christians will serve and use their gifts, have a quiet time, raise their kids if they have them. This changes with life stage.

There was a time when my wife did nothing but help to lead a missional community with me. I had some people ask why she didn’t do other things and I explained our philosophy, Katie’s gift mix and the age of our kids. They were unhappy and left our church.

Your reaction to that last line, pastor, will determine if you will find a healthy balance in this.

If you are a church member, expect your pastor to live out the qualifications of an elder, but don’t expect him to be Jesus. Your pastor did not and will not die on the cross for you and rise from the dead. He cannot be Jesus.

He doesn’t need to be Jesus, we already have a Jesus and he is perfect and amazing and worthy of our worship. Not your pastor.

Here are a few more things to do:

Ask your pastor and his wife how you can pray for them. Don’t look for gossip, just to pray for them.

Give them a gift card to a restaurant for a date night as a way to bless them. Don’t expect anything in return, you are blessing them.

Expect their kids to be kids and act their age. If they have teenagers, expect them to make boneheaded teenager moves like every other teenager. If they have little kids, expect them to tear things up like other little kids.

When you hear someone say, “My old pastor did this or my old pastor’s wife did this, why doesn’t this pastor or his wife do that?” Gently but firmly explain this and then tell them, “If you liked it so much, maybe you should go back to your old church and your old pastor.”

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Joshua Reich
Josh Reich is the lead pastor of Revolution Church in Tucson, AZ, the author of Breathing Room: Stressing Less & Living More & is passionate about helping people not settle in life and miss all that God has for them.

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