zachery & riva tims*Several months after the death of Pastor Zachery Tims’ mysterious death, his ex-wife, Pastor Riva Tims is finally speaking out about the events that led up to her late husband’s death and the difficulty she experienced that led to end of their marriage.

Meeting at a local church at age 22 and marrying, the couple had a love for each other and even deeper love to serve God and win souls. Shortly after their marriage, they were eager to begin their ministry.

“So we labeled ourselves as an outreach ministry. So, our whole goal was to pull people in from the streets, not to pull them from other churches but really to get those that were unsaved,” she said in an interview with CBN.

” I think the people felt our love, they felt our sincerity and we were young. We had a lot of zeal for the Lord, a lot of excitement.”

Quickly growing their church from 5 to 8,000, along with an attendance boost came a heightened level of celebrity with the church community. This began to take a tole on the couple.

“There was somewhat of a distance that began to take place. I could still connect, but I knew that there was something different.”

She realized something was wrong when Zachery began to travel a lot and prevented her from traveling with him.

“It was always a reason why I couldn’t go. That’s when I knew.”

Her suspicions were affirmed when Zachery’s affairs were uncovered. She was hurt by the affair but more so by his reaction to them. When asked about his level of remorse, she said

“In the beginning he was remorseful he got caught and that’s the part that hurt. There was no running after me, coming after me. He was trying to keep everything together.”

“My heart hurt, not just in spiritual way, not just in an emotional way but in a physical way and I didn’t realize that people hurt that badly. But the Lord told me to hold my peace. That was the hardest thing you could ever do.”

Wanting to pursue counseling, Zachery was reluctant to sit down from ministry and she believes he returned prematurely when resuming his role after just three months.

According to Riva, well meaning members urged him to come back too soon, telling him they didn’t care what he did, becoming “enablers” to him. This too helped to prevent their marriage and family from healing. In addition to this, the leaders of their church began to turn against her.

“Actually I was just kind of, you know, booted out, so to speak, and asked not to come back. It was like, if they see you, they won’t heal, I was told. So just stay away.”

Subsequently, Zachery began to confess to her more about the affairs. Looking for help in high profile pastors, she was again disappointed.

“They didn’t want to hear it or if they did hear it, they would say with that, get over it. It happened to me. You gotta think about the church. You gotta think about the ministry and my mindset was it first starts at home. You know, your relationship with God starts at home first before you can go out and minister…”

Check out the full interview below: