Your Pastor Is Under ATTACK! What Will You Do?

Hell has unleashed a coordinated assault against spiritual leaders. Are you willing to provide extra prayer covering to protect them?

I wasn’t feeling especially spiritual–I was just trying to decide which carpet color I liked best. But God had other plans for me that afternoon.

Jerry, a stout 60-year-old flooring salesman, had come into my office to show me some carpet for our church. We had never met, so we chatted briefly about his business.

After a quick orientation on material and pricing options, I dove into the bulky sample books he had plunked down on my desk. I think I was considering the virtues of a soft geometric pattern when I looked up and was caught completely by surprise:

Jerry’s broad shoulders were shuddering. He was red in the face, trying hard to hold back his tears.

“Are you OK?” I asked, feeling somewhat awkward.

“I’m sorry, it’s just that this is hard for me. I used to be a pastor like you. Coming back to a church setting like this for the first time is difficult.”

“What happened?” I inquired, trying to imagine what drove his pain.

“The constant pressure in our church on top of the painful physical attacks my wife was having almost ate me up emotionally. I became a nervous wreck. I got to the place that I knew if that phone rang just one more time, I’d lose it.

“So my wife and I packed up and walked away after 30 years of ministry. It tore us up. We still love God, but the constant battles … .”

Jerry’s voice trailed off. His head tilted down and his hands covered his eyes in shame. Before I knew it, I was on my knees beside this broken man. He gripped my hand. I asked the Lord to restore his wounded spirit and heal his broken heart.

Pastors in Pain

Jerry is not alone. In fact, nearly everywhere I travel, I meet pastors who are hurting. A wave of trouble seems to have been unleashed against the church, and spiritual leaders are getting hit with the worst of it. Many of God’s servants are facing sickness, financial problems, frustrating reversals and unimaginable family tragedies.

What is happening? The Bible warned that the end times would be stressful and difficult. Yet many of us are discerning that something beyond tough times is in play.

I believe there is an all-out assault from the enemy against spiritual leaders. Satan knows what we must be reminded of today: “‘I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered,'” (Mark 14:27, NKJV). For that reason, I believe unless we learn to provide our spiritual leaders with a protective shield of prayer, our churches and ministries will never fully change our cities with the gospel.

It’s no secret that pastors and other spiritual leaders live with continual pressure. Leaders often have tougher paths to walk than those who follow them. The harvest fields they work in are booby-trapped with spiritual and emotional land mines hidden there by the enemy.

The statistics should disturb us. For example, did you know that hundreds of pastors in North America leave the ministry every month because of stress, burnout and failure? The numbers also reveal that:

97 percent of pastors say they were inadequately trained for the challenges they face
80 percent say pastoral ministry has had a negative effect on their children
70 percent say they constantly fight depression
70 percent say they feel underpaid
71 percent say they are in financial trouble
65 percent say they have thought about quitting the ministry within the last 30 days
70 percent say they do not have someone they consider a close friend.

If these figures are correct, we have a crisis on our hands. If these terrible trends hold true over time, the damage will be devastating.

In the midst of this enemy advance, where have all the watchmen gone?

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