I have been very fortunate to have good pastors! I did have a pastor only one time I can recall that did not have his congregation’s best interest at heart, and we felt it and it showed! From being in church for 52 years, I can very safely say that the heart of a true shepherd is definitely for his and her sheep! When I speak of pastors, I am including their spouses as well, because whether they speak or not, they are in the nitty-gritty of all the work, too. I once heard Reverend Ken Hagin, Sr. say, “Just because you are called to pastor and preach and teach that does not mean your spouse is. But, they will be called to something that is a direct help to your ministry! Your spouse may be called to serving. Don’t try to make them have YOUR gift. God will use them in theirs to aid yours!” So there we have it. A pastor’s mate is just as important and needs to be covered in prayer just as much, whether they are teaching or serving or both!
This week the enemy seemed to hit my church family in a way I have NEVER seen. One man lost his daughter and his sister to death on the same day! Families began to have serious illness come upon them out of the blue! Other families had direct emotional attacks through strife and misunderstanding trying to enter in causing emotional distress, as well as, physical pain from the tension of it all. I could go on, but I am sure you are getting the picture! Satan has upped the attacks and the pressures, not only on the church itself, but on our PASTORS as well!
When a pastor sees his/her sheep suffering, they in turn feel that suffering! They feel a compassion for the hurting, just as Jesus did! They have to handle things we can see, and things we can never know about! They are there for their sheep and are constantly lifting them up in prayer. They walk supportively of their sheep, side by side, shoulder to shoulder! A good shepherd never closets himself/herself away from their God given flock. They don’t send others to do their job when it is a very serious situation and you NEED your pastor’s presence! Your pastor and mine prays for us as though we were their own children! They literally stay on their knees until they feel the release of the Spirit of God to move on to the next sheep and their family. They give of themselves, their time, and financial help straight from their own pocket!
When you do this job, it never has an “OPEN” sign or a “CLOSED” sign. I used to think being a doctor was the hardest job on earth, but they at least get weekends off and give their calls to “hospitalists”! A pastor is never “off”! The job can be exhausting, and an emotional and physical drain. You have to have the wisdom of Solomon at all times, along with non-ending patience!
You know if you have a pastor that is up on their game by the way they act in a high pressure situation. The first words out of their mouth will not be the money is down, you aren’t “evangelizing” as you should be, or the church would be growing if WE were really doing our part! It will be “We need to go to God in prayer for this one or that one, their family, etc.” They put the best interest of their flock above all things but God, and they don’t get angry and have a fit or crash into a bundle of nerves when the devil and all of his demons try to break loose! They hold their peace and keep their calm, and in the case of my pastor, they keep and maintain their joy in the Lord no matter if the world SEEMS to be falling down around their ears, so to speak! My pastor is NEVER sharp, mean, or impatient with us. Even when someone is still in need of maturity (I am speaking of myself here!) my pastor never treats them as though he wants to walk the other way, shuns them, or acts as though they don’t deserve the unconditional love he shows the rest! Everyone is loved, treated the exact same, and is appreciated!!
We see why it is so very important to cover them in prayer, prayer, prayer!! Did you know that more than fifty per cent of pastors leave the ministry each YEAR? That is staggering, precious reader! One is too many!
Hold your pastors up! Don’t grumble and complain about them!! This is VERY displeasing to God and you have no idea the whole story, I promise you! Pray for strength, guidance of the Holy Spirit, and for armor bearers to come alongside of them to uplift them! They do these things for us, let us return the favor of prayer to them!
Blessings to you, precious reader!! I hope you enjoyed the Christian devotion and it was a help to you! I will see you soon! Juliana