A few weeks ago the men’s group was having their weekly meeting. A man peered through the window as if trying to see what was going on. One the church leaders thought he was a new visitor and walked over to the door and said, “Hi, are you…..” He never finished the sentence when the man swung his fist at him. Our leader dodged and ended up getting punched in the shoulder instead of the jaw. Total shock and chaos ensued as men began to chase him, and the police were called.
Sometimes life hands you unexpected blows.
Unannounced attacks in ministry often happen in just this manner. They are extremely painful, because not only does it involve shocking pain, but there is an effect on our body, mind, and spirit. Sometimes it affects our ability to trust others. Sometimes it affects our ability to trust God. Wounds from a ministry leader are often so painful because the betrayal is so heart-wrentching.
Psalm 41:9 Even my close friend, someone I trusted, one who shared my bread, has turned against me.
Oh, how David ached at the fact that he thought he had a loyal friend who was walking along in unity with him and felt they were on the same page working toward the same goals. Betrayal hurts and the wounds are sometimes painfully worse than the physical blow our leader shockingly took that night.
Through a vivid dream I felt the prompting of the Holy Spirit to compile stories of unexpected blows in ministry and write them in book form. I need your help. If you are/were on staff at a church and have had an unexpected blow from a leader whom you considered a mentor or friend I’d like to hear your story.
Send me the details. Include your name and phone number so I can speak with you directly if I have any questions. Send your letters to Susan Young, 1005 I St., Los Banos, CA 93635 or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It doesn’t ring true to my ears to say that I look forward to hearing from you because I know the pain of ministry and I know the cost of the betrayal of a friend on my very own soul and the healing process that has to take place. When you trust someone with your well-being it is ever so painful and I get that. So instead I leave you with a prayer that the Lord richly bless you and minister to you and that you be made whole body, mind, and spirit.
3 John 1:2 Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul.