I am on the verge of walking away for good!

by Chris
(Kingman, AZ)

I have been in the ministry for ten years. My wife will no longer attend our church with me and I am ready to walk away and just focus on being a husband and a father. I already got a job as a chaplain at a local prison. I am just struggling with leaving. But I am tired of the conflict and pain. I have found church members to be the most unloving and hateful people I've met. HELP!

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I agree
by: JayCee

@Anonymous Elizabeth+... well put. Your response even helped me put into words what I see happening in my own church as well. I agree with the others my brother... time to leave. I've been in the situation before... and am actually in it again, but we've decided to at most to finish this year out since I'm on the Elder board... but we may leave after August, we'll see. Once you leave you will look back and ask.. "why didn't I leave sooner?" The previous signs God has been giving you to leave will suddenly be so clear, but you have to make the move. My wife currently does not go to Sunday mornings anymore... it's deflating. So dead, no spirit, only 'going through the motions' as the pastors wife leads the worship and then he preaches. Our pastor is a good man and brings good sermons... but him and his wife are the only full time employees of the church. It has partially turned into a 'family business.' This is why we are leaving. take care - JayCee

Move on Brother
by: Anonymous

Move on Brother. I support you. I was a pastor's wife and an ordained deacon. i stopped attending also. I have met some of the nicest people in church and some of the biggest bullies and abusers ever. Your wife refusing to attend is a sure sign that you have to make a choice. Her or the congregation. That choice is not so hard, is it? Wife first. Being a provider, a husband first. The pastorate is the sickest profession a man or woman can have. Congregations put you literally upon on a pedestal. This is idolatry. Then you fall into this ego thing. Then you get attached to the adulation. Nobody tells you that you will become sickeningly dependent on this adulation as you expound on Scripture and keep everyone so enthralled with your exegesis of the Bible and your wonderful sermons. On and on it goes. This is hero worship or something worse. Then, when your marriage falls apart, and your kids act out, which is inevitable, and all too common, you wonder where "your faith" is? and, "what happened to my calling?" Were you called to make people fawn over you? Were you called to an ego rush? Were you called to ignore your family and put a group of people you just met over and above your own wife and children? of course not. But , that is what you ended up doing for "the call". So, I suggest you get out brother while your wife still wants to stay married. Eventually, she will leave. She didn't marry you to get second prize. Don't worry cause once you leave your marriage will get immediately better. Mine did. Eventually, my kids forgave me and their Dad for being such egomaniacal junkies. pastoring is a head rush and when you are so "needy" for people's adulation and admiration you will find yourself in the biggest danger zone ever. Sign me: recovering from sickening co-dependency and no longer a people pleaser. Elizabeth+

A City Divided
by: Dan Sherman

I can't imagine how severe your pain must be right now. If your own wife refuses to participate in the congregation, things must be very bad.

My only advice is this: if your wife can no longer support the ministry, it is probably time to move on.

Of Course that's easier said than done. But you can't let your marriage suffer because you are a pastor.

Also, if you are a chaplain at a prison - you have one of the greatest ministries available! Perhaps you should pursue that at least while your wife and you heal.

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