Got news a few days ago that a local Baptist pastor killed himself…uh huh, sadly you read correctly. Its estimated that 734,000 people attempt suicide every with 30,000 men, women and teens successfully completing the job every year! The numbers are staggering: Every 17 minutes someone ends their life!! 2/3 of them are struggling with depression.
Ministers are at risk for suicide, depression, high blood pressure, obesity, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, and divorce in dealing with the super pressure environment they live and serve in. It is estimated that 1500 pastors a month throw in the towel and leave the ministry for other career fields. Many feel discarded and failures. Shepherds need a shepherd too. Shepherds need someone they can feel safe and discuss their struggles without being looked down on.
This pastor who committed suicide spoke of pressure in the church from criticism that he thought was growing everyday (he was pastor 25 years) and pressure at home to the point he reasoned this way out was best. He closed his note by saying, “What I have done is not an act of insanity. My thinking is very rational. This way everybody gets what they want. They say that sooner or later you make everyone happy. Some when you come. Some while you are there. And, some when you leave. Well, now everyone is happy.“
NO MY BROTHER….not everyone is happy and I’m sad you thought they would be.
Dear reader…check on your pastor(s)! love he and his family and let them be imperfect like the rest of us. Spoil them with kindness ever so often. I promise it will come at just the right time. Give some grace and pray pray pray for your pastor(s) today that Satan will not get the advantage.
If you would want to read this pastor’s suicide letter please go to my FB page and scroll down till you read my intro to it. www.facebook.com/pathand1?ref=tn_tnmn