“Pastor’s have it easy. They only work one day a week!”
Have you ever heard or thought something like that? I’ll cut to the chase. Nothing could be farther from the truth! Pastors have one of the most difficult jobs in the world. When I served in full-time vocational ministry, a slow week was easily 60 hours of work.
Between preparing sermons (in some cases, multiple sermons each week), hospital visitations, counseling sessions, meetings, funerals, weddings, and a multitude of other random needs that pop up in a given week, your pastor wears many hats.
Don’t get me wrong; serving in ministry is an enormous blessing, and most pastors do so because they are called and genuinely have a desire to do so. But just because it’s a blessing doesn’t mean it isn’t exhausting.
With that in mind, I’d like to give you a navigation system for loving your pastor well—a GPS system (Give, Pray, Serve).
When I say you can love your pastor by giving, you may think I’m talking about money. I’m not. Well, at least not exclusively. The ways you can give are only limited by your creativity*. If you have a garden, bring his family some tomatoes; if you know which grocery store his family likes to shop at, anonymously mail them a gift card to that store; even simply sending him a note of encouragement in the mail is a simple way to give to your pastor.
Chances are, your pastor hears a lot more from the squeaky wheels than the encouragers. Your giving can be a long-lasting encouragement to him.
*Bear in mind things your pastor would actually like to receive. It’s not a blessing to give him a home-cooked meal if you’re a bad cook! Know what he and his family like, need, etc. and give considerately.
You pastor prays for you. Why do you think that is? It’s not simply because he’s paid to. He prays for you because he loves you and wants you to grow in grace. So one of the most simple ways to love him well is to keep him and his family in your prayers.
Send him a text to let him know you’re praying for him and ask him how you can be praying for them specifically—then actually follow through by doing so! He probably won’t share his most intimate needs with you, and that’s okay; the Lord knows his needs, and your pastor will likely be encouraged just to know that you’re thinking of and praying for him and his family.
Because your pastor serves in many different ways, you can be a blessing to him by being aware of some of the practical tasks he handles (particularly in smaller churches, but this applies to larger churches as well).
If you know that your pastor mows the church lawn, empties the trash, locks up the building after worship, drives the church bus to pick up folks who cannot drive, etc., volunteer to take over one or several of those tasks to save him some time. He may or may not take you up on the offer, but again he’ll be encouraged to know that he’s not alone.
There are countless other ways to be a blessing to your pastor, but using the GPS system will be a good start.
Share in the comments below other ways we can love our pastors well.