I’ve got an easy one for you, folks. You don’t have to invite your pastor into your home, buy him dinner, volunteer to clean toilets, or spend a dollar! All I’d like for you to do this week to care for your pastor is to ask him/her specifically how YOU can pray for them this week. That’s it. Then, go home and ACTUALLY PRAY. Next week check in with your pastor and see how things are going and if there has been any answer to prayer or change in the circumstances.
Pretty easy, huh? Aren’t you glad that you don’t have much to do? I’ll bet you’re thinking there must be a catch. For the 41 previous weeks I’ve asked you to get out of your comfort zone a bit and reach out to your pastor and other ministry leaders in your church. Well……..you’re right. There is a catch.
It isn’t enough to simply ASK your pastor how you can pray. If you ask, then you are expected to follow through and actually PRAY. Every day. All week.
The Bible tells us that, “The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.” James 5:16 (NASB). The Holman Christian Standard Bible translates the verse as “The intense prayer of the righteous is very powerful.”
I want my prayers to be very powerful and to accomplish much; I know you do, too. How do we go about it? I believe that making a commitment to set aside a little time every day, for a week, to pray for your pastor would be a very powerful thing indeed. When we purposefully and intentionally intercede for him/her; lifting up specific needs or circumstances to the Father we can be assured that our God is hearing us and is working all things together for the good (Romans 8:28) on our pastor’s behalf.
But how do we remember to pray every day for our pastor if it isn’t already a habit? I have a few tricks I use, because I’ve been guilty of saying, “I’ll pray for you” and then promptly forgetting my promise as soon as I walked away.
*Place your watch on the opposite wrist. Every time you check the time you’ll be prompted to pray – because you’ll be constantly checking both wrists.
*Set a timer on your phone to coincide with a quiet time during your day to stop and pray in earnest.
*Place a sticky note in the middle of your bathroom mirror. Each morning upon arising you’ll see the note when you go to brush your teeth or shave and be reminded to stop first and pray, then proceed with your morning ritual.
*Place a sticky note on the steering wheel of your car, on your computer screen, or any place that will give you a mental jolt when you see it in order to prompt your memory of your commitment to pray.
Finally, when you’re back at church the following Sunday follow up with your pastor and see how he/she is doing. Tell him/her that you’ve been specifically praying every day and that you will continue to pray (if there has been no change). Your pastor will be so touched and will feel loved and cared for. And, I might add, you’ll feel pretty good yourself.
**We recognize that there are many women pastors and that all posts don’t apply equally to men and women in ministry. We try to be gender neutral and when the use of he/she or him/her is too cumbersome we default to the masculine pronoun. The reverse is true for referring to the pastor’s spouse. We hope that you can read past these masculine and feminine pronouns to the spirit behind each post —- creative ways to be a blessing to those who serve us…..and their spouses.