7 Ways To Pray For Your Pastor
Do you pray for your pastor? Maybe you have never thought of it. Maybe you have, but have never known how. It’s okay, but as the daughter of a pastor hear me out when I tell you your pastor needs you. Being a pastor is unlike any other job. We are told in James 3:1 and Hebrews 13:17 those who preach and teach will not only give an account of their own lives before Christ but also those they led. They carry authority, but also a great deal of responsibility in the spiritual and in the practical. They are the ones appointed to shield and protect the body of Christ. This often means they are the ones absorbing all the blows.
Pastoral responsibilities go far beyond the job description.
Their job includes…
teaching and preaching
administering and budgeting
visiting and comforting
peacemaking and protecting
studying and facilitating
hiring and firing
…and so much more.
They are expected to be available all the time to step in the middle of every congregant’s crisis moments. They are expected to be involved in the community but also have the most intimate spiritual lives practicing all the disciplines every day. The word “expectation” is one of the most important words to consider. Measure the reality of your own expectations and weigh their importance before approaching your pastor. Also, feel the weight of expectations your pastor is under and use that to guide you in praying for them.
Criticism is never far away as a pastor. It is one of the most recognizable forms of attack they weekly receive. The enemy does not always work directly, but often tries to use one of us and our own preferences to get the job of discouragement accomplished. Be aware of this. Choosing prayer and exhortation is always more effective than criticism.
In praying for your pastor, God will work in you as well. He will give you empathy and lead you in how to support your pastor. Not everyone is called to be the pastor’s best friend, and most of the time you will not be the person your pastor confides in when they need help. That is also okay. God might lead you to support in other ways. While you are praying, listen for God’s promptings and be a vessel of His heart. Be sensitive that what you think is helping your pastor may not be the help they need. Instead, be available in prayer to hear the Lord prompt you and gift you ‘blessing orders’ from His vantage point.
This journey of praying for your pastor is an exciting one full of so many sweet moments! Have joy in your calling to partner with Christ in this way. Don’t wait. You can start small with just a simple prayer right now. Here are some prayer points to get you going:
1. Pray your pastor will be surrounded by encouragers
Be willing for this to be you, but know that the Lord is especially talented at bringing the right person along at the right time. Pray the Lord sends such people often.
2. Pray they will be strengthened to fight spiritual attack
The burden pastors carry is not always visible. Lies of the enemy come at an exponential rate and can leave even the strongest pastor restless and doubtful.
3. Pray they will be continually reminded of the Lord’s call and faithful promises
Remembering to remember is half the battle. It is so easy to be caught in all the business of ministry. Pray your pastor will have sweet moments of looking back at all God has done and believing His call is still on their life.
4. Pray for their family and their marriage
As a pastor’s kid myself, I can say that the whole family is a part of ministry whether they signed up for it or not. This can be the sweetest blessing to see the Lord at work, but it also can bring unique challenges. Pray these relationships would be strengthened and affirmed regardless of what ministry currently looks like.
5. Pray for an increased measure of wisdom and discernment
Pastors are decision-makers and mission keepers. Pray they are equipped with the right gift at the right time for the task at hand.
6, Pray for true rest physically, spiritually, and emotionally
It is so hard for pastors to rest and recover. Being a pastor is far from a 9-5 job and burdens are always there. Pray they would rest physically, but also would learn from the Lord what spiritual and emotional rest look like for them.
7. Pray for their protection in every way
Whether it is physical protection or otherwise, this is one of the most important prayers to pray.
If praying for your pastor is a call you feel stirring in you, I encourage you to check out some of the resources below or do your own search to find out more.
“Pastors are People Too” by Jimmy Dodd and Larry Magnus
This article was written by Abbie Russell.
Abbie Russell is a worshipper of Christ and senior at Milligan University. She is majoring in Business and Humanities with a minor in Art and hopes to work in nonprofit ministry. The Tri-cities rgion has always been home and she cannot wait to see it set totally on fire for Christ.