Pray for Your Pastor
As a pastor I can assure you that your pastor both covets and needs your prayers. Pastoring is not just another 40-hour-a-week job where you clock-in 5 days a week, just to clock-out that evening. Pastoring is a 24/7 calling of God and therefore comes with its own unique challenges. It is encouraging to know that my church members are lifting me, and my family, up in prayer. Let me give you a few Biblical reason why you should pray for your pastor.
· James 3:1 tells us that those who teach (preach) the Word of God will face a stricter judgment in regards to what they teach concerning God's Word. Most pastors spend a great amount of time each week studying for and preparing their messages. Part of that preparation is asking God to lead them in speaking His truth and not just their opinion.
· Hebrews 13:7 reminds us that the pastor is responsible for the souls of his flock (church). Your pastor prays for you. Your pastor is concerned about your spiritual growth. Your pastor weeps when you go astray. Multiply that by the number of those in your church and you will begin to understand the enormity of the spiritual responsibility that your pastor carries daily.
· 1 Peter 1:8 tells us that Satan is like a roaring lion seeking those that he can devour. Satan loves to destroy any pastor that he can. When Satan can devour and destroy a pastor it affects so much more than just that pastor. It affects his wife and children. It affects the church that he pastors. It affects the testimony of Christ in the communities in which he lives and pastors. The temptations that your pastor faces come at him hard, fast, and heavy.
· Your pastor faces unique stress and pressures. Some days your pastor feels like the load that he is carrying is mountain-sized. Yet he is so often not able to share that load with anyone else. Your pastor carries the burdens of those families that are crumbling. Your pastor carries the burdens of those who are grieving. Your pastor carries the burden of those who have walked away from God and His church. Your pastor carries the burden of loving those who smile to his face and yet condemn him secretly to others. Your pastor shoulders those burdens that many in the church know nothing about, and few would be willing to share in carrying even if they did.
Pastoring is not easy. Loneliness is perhaps the greatest struggle that your pastor faces. I am blessed to have two men with whom I can share my deepest hurts and joys. Neither of them are members of the church that I pastor. Most pastors have learned the hard way the great hurt that comes from being betrayed by a "friend" in the church.
Pastoring is not easy, but I believe that pastoring is one of the greatest callings that God could ever bestow on a man. I love being a pastor. I love ministering to and with the people in my church. I love sharing Christ with those around me. I love watching believers grow in their faith. I love seeing lost people come to a saving relationship with Jesus Christ. I love being used by God in such a unique and wonderful way.
I also love knowing that those in my church are praying for me. Next week we'll look at some specifics on how to pray for your pastor. In the meantime, tell your pastor that you are praying for him, and then watch as his eyes light up!
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