52 Ways: #52

52ways[1]Commit to regularly pray for your pastor

We are at the end of our 52 Ways series.  Or, is it just the beginning?  I’ve given you many, many ideas of ways to show your pastor, pastoral team, church leaders, spouses, and PK’s that you care for them.  Now the ball is in your court.  Have you done any of the previous 51 ways?  Do you plan on doing any of them in the future?

For this last week I’d like to suggest again that you make a commitment to pray for your pastor on a regular basis.  Prayer is such an important job for everyone in the church.  Everyone.  It is so important, in fact, that I’m going to reiterate our very first suggested way to care for your pastor from one year ago. I’m not only going to ask that you make a personal commitment to pray, but that you make a formal commitment by forming a group that regularly meets to pray specifically for your pastors, their spouses, and their children.

I think we fear joining a prayer group because we are convinced it will take too much of our time.  We get it in our heads that if we aren’t spending an hour praying it doesn’t count for much.  However, that simply isn’t the case.  Yes, you could form a weekly one-hour prayer group, but you don’t have to in order to be effective.  You could grab a couple of friends and meet 10 minutes before church service to lift up your pastor in prayer.  You could devote the first five minutes of your weekly Bible study group or small group to lift up your pastor.  The time involved doesn’t matter, prayer matters.  So simply pray!

I’m going to go even further and get a little crazy on you and also suggest that you fast now and then and use that time to pray for your pastor.  By fast, I mean giving up something you would normally eat or drink.  For instance, you could do a dedicated fast and spend part of your fast lifting up your pastor and your church (and the church at large) in your prayers.  Some churches do a yearly month-long fast to begin the New Year.  But, fasting doesn’t have to mean giving up all food and living on water.  You could fast a day, a couple of meals, or just part of a meal.  I could decide to forgo my afternoon snack of milk and cookies and instead use that time to pray for my pastor.  That is considered a fast because I’ve given up something and dedicated the time I would be eating to prayer.  Easy, right?  Do you think it is a possibility that you could incorporate some form of a fast in your time of praying for your pastor?  You don’t have to though, but you certainly can.

The bottom line is to become a people of prayer.  Prayer should be our first resort, not our last.  So, when you pray for your pastor let me give you the same list I gave you on week #1.

Pray for wisdom.

Pray for God’s peace on him and his family.

Pray for strength.

Pray for encouragement.

Pray for health.

Pray for inspiration.

Pray for a closer walk and for time to spend on his own in prayer and the word.  You’d be surprised at how many pastors struggle with their own personal devotions!

Remember, Satan doesn’t want us to pray for our pastors, or anyone else for that matter, so expect some resistance.  Expect to fall asleep quickly if you intend to pray the last thing at night before sleep.  Expect the phone to ring the second you begin.  Be prepared to push through the distractions and then………simply pray!

There you have it!  Number 52 of 52 Ways to Care for Your Pastor.  What do you think?  Have these been helpful to you?

I’d love to hear from you.  Seriously.  I’ve received some great feedback and have heard some fun stories.  If you’d like to share your story you can write to me at Leslie.e@standingstoneministry.org or comment below.  I can’t wait to hear from you.

 

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