Devotional Thoughts · ministry

Satan’s Day Off

“Did you hear about Bro. Smith?” whispers Mrs. Know-it-All to a small group of ladies. “I heard he dropped a missionary just because he didn’t think he was working hard enough over on the field.” 

“Oh? I heard that he got bullied by his deacons and was forced to drop him!” replied Mrs. Busy-Body.

“No, no, that’s not it. They got into a knock-down-drag-out and the pastor let him go.” chirrped Mrs. I’m-Always-Right.

“Actually, you are all wrong,” chimed in Mrs. Verbose, “that pastor ran everyone off from his church and they just didn’t have the money to support that missionary anymore.” 

I’ve heard, and sadly been privy to, conversations much like the above. Word gets around about a Pastor and his ministry, his relationships with his family, evangelists and other pastors or missionaries. Some of it might be true, but nine times out of ten, none of it is.

With the internet at everyone’s fingertips these days, lies and half-truths are spreading like wildfire. As a pastor’s wife, it’s irksome to hear a story re-told over and over and each time hearing something new! It’s been very interesting to hear a story that I was involved in directly, come back around to me completely wrong! 

We often think of gossip as something that only church members struggle with, but the truth is everyone struggles with it! Including those in ministry! If we look closely, we can find preachers talking about other preachers/evangelists/missionaries and their petty disagreements, un-spiritual preachers spreading lies or gossip just to tear other men down and make themselves look better, pastor’s wives who struggle with insecurity spreading rumors…the list could go on. Much of this takes place on Facebook or blogs…like mine! {Yikes! Doing a quick mental check of blog content. All clear. Phew.} Here are some thoughts on how to know if you can trust online information:

  • 1. Do you personally know the blog author? If not, be careful! 
  • 2. Is the person being written about violating a scripture? It’s not worth your time arguing about passing the offering plate or putting a box at the back of the auditorium. If you disagree with a person, so what? Don’t ruin their lives because they disagree with you on some silly thing. If they are violating God’s law and you’re reading it online, WARNING! It could be an attempt to soil a good man by spreading lies. The internet is not a good court in which to try a person. Best leave it to the Lord and His judgment. His ways are best.(2 Sam. 22:31)
  • 3. Is the spirit of the blog one that seeks to destroy or build up? If  the posts are always negative and bleak, then consider their point of view. Chances are, they will find the bad in all things! And it’s there if you look for it. 
  • 4. Are they trying to increase hits for their website? Many moons ago, a friend of mine posted an article on his blog regarding two well known preachers and their debate. That post received thousands of hits. Thousands. And he didn’t even have an opinion. It was all a test! Newsworthy names receive hits. Hits mean visitors to that blogger’s  ads. That means money for the blogger.  So be careful little eyes what you read. Especially online.

Let me say that there are “wolves in sheep’s clothing” who need to be called out, no doubt about it. Pastor’s who steal from the church, commit adultery or lie need to be named. Paul did this in 2 Tim. 4:14. But idle conversation about how “Bro. or Mrs. So-and-So” disagrees with me on some minor issue is unnecessary and painful. Satan wants to destroy God’s work and the best way to do that is by turning men of God and their wives on each other. They will attack and destroy the work of the Lord and Satan won’t have to lift a finger. It sort of gives the devil a day off!

Let’s not give him that helping hand this year. Please pray for your pastor and your church!

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