What Are the Traps the Enemy Plans to Set For You?
News stories about pastoral indiscretions abound today—an embezzlement this week, adultery the next. Every Christian’s life is filled with temptation, but spiritual leaders seem to be prime targets for Satan’s attacks. Most pastors find themselves faced with moral temptation of some kind. They are party to intimate details of other people’s sexual lives. They find themselves in positions of power and authority. Even as they work to help others, the voices of lust, pride and ambition whisper:
“It doesn’t hurt to just think about it.”
“This church is a success because of all the things I’ve done.”
“How can I move my career even further ahead?”
More than ever, pastors need moral wisdom and strength. Jesus calls for it. The integrity of their lives and ministries demands it. Now, three experienced pastors explain how temptation can be met and defeated in Dangers, Toils and Snares, the fifth volume of Mastering Ministry’s Pressure Points.
“You are not the passive victim of others’ opinions. In fact, their opinions are powerless until you validate them. No one’s approval will affect me unless I grant it credibility and status. The same holds true for disapproval.” (Page 36)
“The Bible doesn’t really call us to be more motivated or more productive workers. The relevant image in Scripture is fruitfulness. Not busyness. Not even productivity. Fruitfulness.” (Page 55)
“Sloth doesn’t necessarily mean we’re doing nothing. Sloth is the failure to do what needs to be done when it needs to be done—like the kamikaze pilot who flew seventeen missions.” (Page 52)
“Herein lies the difference between godly and human ambition: godly ambition originates in the heart of the Father and is fueled by a sincere desire to please him; human ambition originates in the heart of people and is driven by their own ego needs.” (Pages 42–43)
“Its primary symptom is the tendency to confuse my ‘performance in ministry’ with my worth as a person, to seek the kind of approval from people that can only satisfy when it comes from God.” (Page 32)