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Sex Addiction: Are Pastors More Vulnerable to Sexual Temptation?

  • (Photo: Jeff Fisher)
January 25, 2012|3:29 pm

Although no one is immune to sexual temptation, a pastor leading an online pornography addiction recovery ministry says that church leaders may be especially vulnerable to sexually moral failure.

Pastor Jeff Fisher, whose past secret addiction to pornography was discovered while pastoring a church in the Northeast several years ago, recently had his thoughts on the struggles church leadership might face in this area published on Pastors.com.

Fisher and his wife, Marsha, have shared their road to recovery individually and in their marriage along with resources for others struggling with pornography addiction on their Website, PorntoPurity.com.

In his post, "5 Reasons Ministers are (More) Vulnerable to Sexual Temptation," he writes: "Let me start off by saying, no one is immune to sexual temptation. It doesn't matter what your job is, how old you are, or how much time you spend with Jesus each day."

"We all have the potential to fall sexually," he continues. "Even ministers… and maybe, especially ministers. Ministers have jobs that automatically put them in a pressure cooker."

Of the five reasons Fisher writes about, he told The Christian Post that the most likely cause for falling for sexual temptation is that "ministers are often isolated and unaccountable for their actions."

"Isolation with no accountability is a prelude to disaster," he explained. "When we cut ourselves off from others we're shutting off sources of truth and objectivity. We lose the opportunity for fellowship and confession."

Fisher said there are plenty of examples in the Bible about "one anothers," Christians working together to support and hold each other accountable for their potential and occurring sins.

"Accountability can be personal… other men asking you key questions. But it can also take the form of church policies. If I have good policies for my visitation and counseling they can help me establish boundaries," he said.

"If the policies around the pastorate are regularly reviewed, that can be a good measure of protection for the minister. If you have accountability software on your personal laptop and on the church computers, it provides another level of transparency that is essential for maintaining sexual purity," he added.

Church leaders and others coming out of isolation and into accountability need to take the risk, and in order for them to risk they must have courage, Fisher said.

"We have to believe that the potential for sexual sinning is great, and the consequences are devastating. We will not take the necessary steps to come out of isolation unless we have a great motivation that drives us," he explained. "For me, it took getting caught, losing my job, having to move, and almost losing my family for me to get serious."

Fisher writes that the other unique aspects for those being in ministry that make them more vulnerable to opening the door to sexual temptation are the position of power, churches often having lax policies regarding accountability, and not enough trusted people to be transparent with.

Also, the fact that pastors can sometimes be "approval addicts" is also dangerous.

"Not only are broken church members looking for attention, but so are broken ministers," writes Fisher. "Sexual tension in a minister/parishioner relationship is powerful and deadly. It pushes the button of an approval addict and the needy church member and can quickly lead to disaster."

Fisher told CP that there are very good ministries where the counselors have training in sexual addiction and work with ministers.

He recommends: Pure Life Ministries (www.purelifeministries.org); Faithful and True Ministries (www.faithfulandtrueministries.com); Healing For the Soul (www.healingforthesoul.org); and Be Broken Ministries (www.bebroken.com).

Contact: alex.murashko@christianpost.com
Source URL : http://www.christianpost.com/news/sex-addiction-are-pastors-more-vulnerable-to-sexual-temptation-67935/