Your Pastor Needs Your Prayers: A 10 Day Challenge
So last time I challenged you to tell your pastor that you were praying for him. I wonder how many of you actually did. It is far easier to tell your pastor that you are praying for him than it is to actually pray for him. So today, I want to challenge you. In fact, I want to challenge you to spend 10 day praying for your pastor. Your pastor faces unique challenges, stressors, and temptations that most you can have never thought about, and would be shocked if you did. I can tell you, as a pastor, there is nothing that encourages me more than to know that people in my church are praying for me. The challenge has been issued. Will you accept the challenge?
Day 1: Pray for your pastor's personal walk with God. No two days are the same for your pastor. Each day brings with it a new to-do list, new interruptions, new crisis-points, and new landmines to try and avoid. There is only 24 hours in the day, but sometimes your pastor goes to bed at night knowing that he has 27 hours of things to do the next day. Far too often your pastor puts aside his time in prayer and his time in God's Word to minister to you and all those around him that have needs, hurts, concerns, and want just a couple of minutes of his time. Pray that your pastor will make his personal walk with God the priority of his day, which nothing will take the place of his Quiet Time with God.
- Pray that his spirit will be strengthened in his quiet time with God.
- Pray that he will spend more time in the Word of God than reading Christian books and articles.
- Pray that his prayer life will be a sacred time that he allows nothing to interfere with.
Day 2: Pray for your pastor's marriage. The enemy loves to wreak a pastor's marriage, but he also finds joy in simply disrupting it. When your pastor is so busy with everything else, his wife and his marriage pay the price. Remember, when your pastor in at the church till 10pm with meetings multi nights a week that those are evening he is not spending with his wife. When he is ministering to the hurts and needs of others it is easy to neglect the hurts and needs of his wife, who faces her own unique challenges as a pastor's wife. Pray that your pastor will make time for his wife. In fact, make it a reality for your pastor and his wife to have one or two nights a month just for them.
- Pray that it will be a strong model of Christ's relationship with the church.
- Pray that your pastor will love his wife and cherish her as Christ loves and cherishes the church.
- Pray that your pastor and wife will make time for themselves, away from the many pressures of being a pastoral family.
Day 3: Pray that God will protect your pastor. The enemy wants to destroy your pastor, his testimony, and his ministry. Your pastor daily stands on the frontline of spiritual battle and sometimes becomes weary and discouraged. Let your pastor know that he is not alone and that you have his back!
- Pray that he will not compromise the Word of God, or his faith, as he ministers to those in the world.
- Pray that his family will be protected from attacks both inside and outside the church.
- Pray that God will guard his heart in the use of free time.
Day 4: Pray that God will guard and bless his relationships. Pastoring can be very lonely. Your pastor needs friends who will come alongside him and his family, loving them and accepting them for who they are, period. Your pastor struggles with knowing who he trust to care his heart with. Too many times people befriend your pastor, not to encourage him, but to get something from him. We humans are made for relationships…
- Pray that your pastor will cherish and build-up those relationships that God has given him.
- Pray that he will handle conflict with Godly love, wisdom, and compassion.
- Pray that God will bring godly friends and encouragers to your pastor and his family.
Day 5: Pray that your pastor will be humble and authentic in his faith. Your pastor is not perfect. He faces many of the same struggles, hurts, fears, and failures that you do. Don't you want a pastor who can be transparent about his daily walk with Christ; his struggles and his victories?
- Pray that he will not give in to pride of hypocrisy.
- Pray that he will have pure and Godly motives.
- Pray that he will give God the glory in all victories.
Day 6: Pray that you pastor will make healthy lifestyle choices. This goes back to having 27 hours of things to get done in a day. Eating right and exercising takes time, and money; both of which tend to be scarce around the pastors house. Here's another idea. If you are concerned about your pastor's lack of exercise, why not buy his family a gym membership?
- Pray that he will get the exercise that he needs.
- Pray that he will get the rest that he needs.
- Pray that he will schedule times of relaxation and renewal.
Day 7: Pray that you pastor will choose to please God – not man. We all want our pastor to stand for God. We all want our pastor to choose pleasing God over pleasing man. This takes courage in our world today. The day is not that far away when your pastor will face harsh consequences for standing for God.
- Pray that your pastor will strive to please God in his leadership.
- Pray that your pastor will strive to please God in his messages.
- Pray that your pastor will strive to please God in his relationships.
Day 8: Pray that your pastor will not give in to discouragement. Your pastor hears all the hurts, the pains, the devastating news, and the struggles that those in his church face. He stands with you in times of joy and times of sorrow. He cries with you and he cries for you. And sometimes at night when he is all alone he cries for himself. He is tired. He is struggling with his own hurt, pain, devastating news, and struggles. And yet is feels alone. Pastoring can be discouraging...pray for your pastor.
- In the face of criticism, pray that he finds peace in the Word of God.
- In the face of conflict, pray that he responds with Godly love and wisdom.
- In the face of hurts, pray that he finds comfort in his relationship with God.
Day 9: Pray that your pastor will have a clear, Biblical vision of what your church can be and should be for His glory. God wants your church to thrive, not just survive. God wants your church to be a lighthouse of His love in your local ministry area. This all begins with a Godly vision.
- Pray that he will seek God's will and not his own will.
- Pray that he will be confident in the direction that God is leading.
- Pray that he will be able to clearly and confidently communicate God's vision to the church.
Day 10: Pray for any hurts that your pastor has suffered in ministry. You carry the baggage of your past with you, and so does your pastor. It's hard to let go of those things that have impacted you so deeply even though they affect our present day walk.
- Pray that he will serve God with gladness.
- Pray that he will lay all those hurts at the foot of the cross.
- Pray that he will be strengthened in love, and encouraged with joy.
That's the challenge! Pray for you pastor. He covets your prayers. He needs your prayers. Your pastor will be a better pastor as you pray for him. You church will be strengthen as you pray for him. You will be blessed as you pray for him.
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