Shield Your Marriage
Written by Lydia D’Ross, Ordained Minister and Outreach Chaplain for RENEWAL at Brookhaven Hospital
Many pastors quit their calling early for many reasons. Barna reports that “Most pastors (57%) and youth pastors (64%) admit they have struggled with porn, either currently or in the past.” Barna further said, ” 87% of pastors who use porn feel a great sense of shame about it and 55% of pastors who use porn say they live in constant fear of being discovered.”
In comparison, 47% of men and 12% of women in general seek out porn at least once or twice a month. Barna (Feb 5th 2016)
Mental Illness is another struggle that pastors deal with in their marriages. Life Way reports that 1 in 4 Pastors have struggled with mental illness or depression due to unwanted divorce. You may be a pastor married to a spouse who has no interest in being a substitute or feeling like they are treated as second best. All marriages have stressors, and are vulnerable to outside influences.
Why is it important to shield your marriage? Proverbs 4:23 reads, “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.”
Sometimes in marriage, we let down our guard, lose traction and stumble. However, we still need to be able to get back up, and guard our own hearts. We must not allow things or people to interfere in what God ordained as a “Covenant Marriage.”
In the middle of a struggling marriage, it’s very easy to focus on what’s wrong instead of stopping to listen to God and ask Him for guidance.
Marriage takes two people. You have control over how you behave through open communication, transparency and even allowing yourselves to be accountable to others whom you trust. Turning to trusted friends as well as God during times of difficulty in your marriage will help build a shield around your most important earthly relationship.