Volume 3 Issue 4
We have become deeply involved with a lay couple in our church and they have become jealous of our time. How do we get out of this situation?
At this point you don’t need me to tell you that it’s not to your advantage, as the leader of the congregation, to become intimately involved with a single couple in the church. Seeking intimate friendships from the congregation you lead always has certain problems. Obviously, you’re already facing some of these problems, such as the jealousy from others in the church. And the domineering attitude that this couple has toward your time is just as great a problem.
I recommend that you do not break off your relationship immediately. Instead, as you spend time with this couple in the next few months, begin including other people. If you go out to eat after church, make sure that there are other couples invited to go along in the group. Slowly begin to disengage yourself from intimate social contact so that you can restore the proper balance of leadership that you need with this couple.
Most ministers will tell you that they have found it very difficult to pastor those with whom they have become intimately involved. That’s because people ultimately need you to be their spiritual mentor rather than their friend. This is not to say you should not be friends with the people in your congregation. It simply means that you can’t allow yourself to become so bogged down with one or two people that you then have no time for anybody else. The church is for everybody, and so is the pastor.
Take control of the situation, broaden you sphere of fellowship, and stay in control of your time. You’ll soon notice that other people appreciate you sharing yourself with the whole congregation.