>> May 14, 2010
And like the wonderful and generous man he is, he got me an iPad. Not ridiculously bank-breaking extravagant, but definitely a nice gift. Something I'd been drooling over for a while now, but didn't think we could afford - so I hadn't bothered to ask.
The thing is, I'd really like to show off my fabulous new gadget - but I'm not sure I should. You know how it goes...
People start to wonder how the pastor will wisely manage the church's money if it looks like his family is too well off. Nobody wants to trust a man who's wife appears spendthrift.
You can drive a brand new Honda and nobody will blink. But if you decide to save a lot of money and pay cash for an $8,000 BMW - the congregation will think you're high-maintenance. (And yes, we drive Hondas - but we buy them used!)
Maybe in some churches, money isn't an issue. But the majority of pastoral families I know tend to be on the lower end of broke. Ministry just isn't a career for making money. And that's fine with me. I'm the queen of bargain shopping. I love finding an outfit on the $14.99 clearance rack at TJ Maxx that looks like it cost a lot more.
So when my hunny takes our unexpected tax return and uses it to make me happy, I don't feel guilty. I do, however, feel obligated somehow to let people know that it wasn't a wasteful purchase. Because I know that plenty of members gauge their trust in God's church by their observation of God's ministers. But honestly, it gets exhausting to explain over and over again.
I'm thinking maybe I'll just leave it home and delight over it in private.
How about you? How do you handle inquiries or observations from your members about money?
Next Friday: "the pastoral family and money (part2) - getting out of debt"
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