‘Time in the Word’ By Clayton Adams
“And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God…” (Ephesians 4:11-13).
God “gave pastors” and others to His Church for the purpose of building up, encourage and to prepare the followers of Christ for the work of the ministry. It was never God’s intent to have the pastors do all the work.
Pastors are people just like you. Pastors have emotions, feelings, temptations, short-comings, pride, failures and problems just like you. I hope this isn’t a surprise to you!
Pastors have a very difficult role to fulfill. Most pastors are on call 24 hours a day. They have the privilege of being with families during the best of times such as births, weddings, graduations but are called upon at the worst of times such as divorces, notifying families of another’s death, visiting folks in the hospitals, nursing homes and for funerals.
Pastors will study a good number of hours per week to have the privilege of standing before the congregation for 30-45 minutes giving a heart challenging or life changing message only to have one or two folks tell the pastor they preach too long.
I have often told folks who are part of a local church of the opportunity they have to train or develop their new pastor or encourage the long serving pastor. Here are a few ways you can help and encourage your pastor.
First, earnestly pray for your pastor every day and let him or her know you pray for him or her.
Second, support the spouse of your pastor even more than you support the pastor.
Third, be generous in pay and benefits to the pastor.
Most pastors are underpaid, underappreciated and overwhelmed.
Fourth, remember the pastor’s kids. Kids know when folks talk about or are taking advantage of their parents. Children of pastors carry a very heavy load for their parents and church folks.
Five, ask your pastor, “How can I help you?”
And then help without grumbling or complaining to yourself or anyone else.
Six, pastors are not always good leader’s, but you can always be a good follower.
Seven, don’t ever say, “We’ve never done it that way before.”
Eight, let the pastor make mistakes and don’t criticize him or her, but offer your help to recover from the mistake and encourage him or her to try again.
Nine, treat your pastor as you want to always to be treated, with respect, love, affirmation, forgiveness, grace, generosity and encouragement.
Ten, pastors are always pouring themselves into individuals every day – who is pouring encouragement, education and inspiration into your pastor and spouse? Send them to conferences or simply for a weekend away from the church two or three times per year. And make them take a paid, minimum of a two-week long vacation per year, more if possible.
Please, if you have a pastor that brings you the Word of God, encourages or challenges you, do all you can to keep your pastor and help them achieve the vision God gave them for you and your community.
Clayton Adams has a message of faith he would like to share with the community. He would also like to hear from you. E-mail him at claytonpadamslll@ gmail.com.