Moral failure is something that has been coming up a lot in recent conversations. A few weeks ago, my friend told me that the head pastor of her home church recently stepped down from his position due to moral failure. The church was devastated. The ripples of the pastor’s sin rocked the lives of his entire congregation and even the community as a whole. It damaged the reputation of his church and even worse, damaged the reputation of the Christian Church as a whole.
I feel like most of us can tell a story or two about a pastor falling hard because of sin and moral failure and the destruction that was left in its wake. But too many of us hear these stories and have an “it can’t happen to me” mentality. The scary thing is, it can happen to any of us.
No one plans on having moral failure, nor does it just happen out of nowhere. It starts small. It starts in the small compromises that we make in our everday lives. The “small” sin that we think “isn’t the end of the world.” But those compromises add up. Moral failure isn’t possible without those compromises. A pastor at our church spoke on the subject this weekend and said, “Sin is not a game. It is a war. A war for your soul.”
I was super convicted by his message and asked myself, “Do I view sin as if it is a war?” and “Do I act like sin is a war?” If I am being honest with myself, I don’t think I always do. And I don’t think I’m alone in this. I think it is scary how reckless we can be with our hearts. While we don’t mean to, we often leave them vulnerable to temptation and sin. It is incredibly important that we, not only as church leaders, but also as followers of Christ in general, acknowledge the severity of sin and guard ourselves against it.
“Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” Proverbs 4:23
Take some time today to reflect on this. Are you guarding your heart? What is the “small” sin in your life that you need to be stomping out?