I just wrote a post titled, “Sin is messy”. In a way it was a chance for me to vent a bit about how destructive this sin is, this sin of adultery for a pastor, but as I read it I was struck by two things, 1. the truth of the words, and 2. the harshness of my own anger at the devil and the results of this sin in our church and others I talk to. I’m frankly very tired of good and godly men being stupid!
But what I need to address is this- even though we might sin, destroy our marriages, our lives, our churches….God loves us! He is constantly reaching out to the broken, fallen, failed with his love. And, who needs it more than a fallen pastor? My friend who fell found himself with nothing and no one. His wife divorced him and as she prepared to leave gave him a few dollars. That’s all he had. Everyone had abandoned him, a man who was dearly loved only weeks before. We just don’t know what to do with all of this, do we?
In the middle of the sin of a pastor there is one truth we have to tell them, remind them of and tell ourselves as well- God loves him. He loves me. He’s madly in love with his children no matter what the sin. It’s God’s love the fallen pastor needs the most because all others abandon him and he finds himself alone.
I’m in the middle of a book titled, “Good and beautiful God” by Smith. Today I read chapter four in preparation for a small group. It just brought this truth back to my mind that even in the middle of the most terrible sin a church could experience God is still madly in love with the sinner.
Our response? It has to be the same. We must love that fallen one, embrace them, restore them in some way (not to the pulpit, but to the family) and we must forgive. If God still loves the fallen man or woman how can we possibly do any less?