Preachers Have a Life Too,
You Know?

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Preachers have a life too, you know? At least most of them do! Ok, some of them need to get a life, but most ministers I know have a fairly normal personal life.

By that I mean that it includes good (even great) and bad and also some ugly. That's life. It's up; it's down; and it's in between.

Just because one is a preacher does not mean that his life is perfect. He is not immune to problems or crises or accidents or disasters from without and from within.

Hopefully he has learned how to prepare for the worst (since he has to teach others) but sometimes what we heard in the classroom doesn't translate to real life until we experience it.

That's just the way it is most of the time.

What are some of the areas of real life that we may have to deal with?

Minister's wife.

The wife of a minister can either be a blessing or a curse to his ministry. The outcome, however, is determined in a great part by how he treats her. See more about the preacher's wife later.

Minister's children.

Someone said, "The pastor's kids are the worst kids I know." The pastor said, "That's because they are always hanging out with the deacon's kids!"

There's a lot of pressure on the kids of ministers to be better than all the other kids. That may be somewhat unrealistic but if they can be better without being "better than thou" you will have accomplished something great.

Let's just hope they are better than the deacon's kids! More on the minister's children later.

Minister's parents.

I have not heard or read much about the parents of the minister. But it stands to reason that how he turns out has a lot to do with their influence on him (good or bad or ugly). More on the minister's parents later.

Minister's friends.

If anybody needs good friends, it's the minister. The minister is the representative of God and it's amazing how many people are mad at God and take it out on the preacher.

Many ministers have only a few friends for one reason or another. And yes, sometimes that's the minister's fault. More on the minister's friends later.

Minister's house.

Some ministries provide a parsonage for the minister. That can be good and that can be bad. More about the parsonage later.

Minister's finances.

Money is the killer of many marriages. It is also the killer of many ministries. And the love of money is the root of all evil...not money itself, but the love of money.

Yes we need it to live in this world, but how we look at it and how we handle it will make or break our ministry. More on the minister's finances later.

Minister's possessions.

Is it wrong to have a nice car or to have a nice house? Is it wrong to have nice suits and the bling bling? It's probably not wrong but it depends on who you want to minister to. More on the minister's possessions later.

Minister's physical condition.

Alright, now you quit preaching and started meddling! Does it make any difference whether we are in good shape physically or not? Some think so and some obviously think not. More on the minister's physical condition later.

Minister's diet.

I know diet in part relates to our physical condition but maybe it deserves a page of its own. Physically, we are what we eat. More on the minister's diet later.

Minister's burnout.

This doesn't apply to all but it applies to many preachers and can threaten all.

According to estimates by the Alban Institute in Washington, D.C., at least 17 percent of clergy suffer from stress or burnout.

About 1,400 ministers a year call a toll-free hot line of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), which counsels ministers through its LeaderCare program.

Brooks Faulkner, a LeaderCare counselor, estimates that nearly 100 SBC pastors leave their ministry every month. And that figure is just one ministerial branch of one denomination. More on minister's burnout later.

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