Since this is Pastor Appreciation Month, I’d like for you to join me in a prayer for pastors and their families. I’ve been in the ministry for thirty-three years, and I’ve been a pastor for twenty-seven, so I can relate to needing prayer. There is such a tremendous load that is carried by them, and the weight sometimes seems impossible to bear. Their faith in God has to stay strong because they never know when things are going to shift. One Sunday everything can be going great, and in just a matter of days or even hours, a phone call, text or email could cause it to change.

They have to remain encouragers, even if they aren’t getting any encouragement for themselves. While God asks everyone to love, He instructs pastors to love, lead, and feed His sheep. As bad as the pain of betrayal is, the level of it for a shepherd is hard to explain accurately. When you love someone, and you invest years of training into them, and then that person gets offended and walks away, it’s hard to put into words the feelings you’re left with. However, no matter what personal hurt and pain a pastor is feeling, all of that has to be pushed aside when it’s time to preach the next sermon.

In studying the New Testament and church history, there has never been a more challenging time to be a pastor than today. In all the years I’ve been involved in ministry, I’ve never seen a time like this. Even though we’ve read about it; watching it unfold before our eyes is still amazing to me. The world isn’t surprising me at all because they’re doing what they’ve always done, but seeing church members compromise their convictions is utterly mind-boggling.

Someone asked me the other day how I keep going and stay encouraged. My first response was obviously God and His anointing on my life. Next, I said it was my family, because they are incredible, and I couldn’t make it without them. Last I said it was the faithful ones in the church that are so dependable. I’m talking about the ones who you don’t have to call or send a text to remind them about church. They are consistent and reliable. Some even see you when your hurting and will call or send you a message just to let you know they love you and are praying for you. It’s these people that keep us, pastors, doing what we do.

There’s a pastor getting ready to go into a building program; pray for him and his family.
There’s a pastor struggling with sickness; pray for him and his family.
There’s a pastor that has lost his wife; pray for him and his family.
There’s a pastor that is facing financial stress; pray for him and his family.
There’s a pastor dealing a particular spirit in his church; pray for him and his family.
There’s a pastor experiencing revival and harvest, but need guidance for the next step; pray for him and his family.
There’s a pastor getting older and feeling like he’s lost his value; pray for him and his family.
There’s a pastor dealing with a troubled son or daughter; pray for him and his family.

My list could go on and on, but the bottom line is this; PLEASE, PRAY FOR PASTORS EVERYWHERE TODAY!!!

Pastors, be encouraged this morning, and I pray that you feel strength coming from the prayers of the body of Christ. May a fresh anointing cover you as you preach the Word of God on this Sunday!!!

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