5 Ways To Bless Your Pastor, by Perry Noble

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5 Ways To Bless Your Pastor, by Perry Noble

You may or may not know that Octo­ber is more than the most beau­ti­ful month of the year. It’s also Pas­tor Appre­ci­a­tion Month. For many con­gre­ga­tions it car­ries the same weight as Arbor Day. It means very lit­tle, if any­thing, to most church­es.

Many peo­ple bris­tle at the idea of show­ing any­one extra appre­ci­a­tion or honor if they’re being paid for doing their job. I once asked a Dea­con if they were doing any­thing spe­cial for their pas­tor in Octo­ber and he replied, “Yep, we’re giv­ing him a pay­check!” And he wasn’t being cute. He was being serious. That atti­tude is com­plete­ly oppo­site of what we are com­mand­ed to do in scrip­ture.

How can we honor and respect those God has called and equipped to lead us? How can we avoid wor­ship­ing a per­son­al­i­ty while simul­ta­ne­ous­ly lov­ing and bless­ing our pas­tors and set­ting them up to win and suc­ceed in serv­ing us? Here are 5 prac­ti­cal places to start…

1. Obey The Bible
The pas­tors (elders) who lead the affairs of the church well are wor­thy of DOU­BLE HONOR, espe­cial­ly those whose work is preach­ing and teaching. I Tim­o­thy 5:17
This is a hard verse to argue with. I can choose to pick that verse apart by find­ing exam­ples of bad pas­tors that I don’t think deserve it, or I can sub­mit myself to God’s author­i­ty and begin to give dou­ble (gen­er­ous, gra­cious) honor to my leaders. Don’t refuse to honor your pas­tor because you’re afraid it will go to his head and cause him to be arrogant. How fool­ish! Honor and encour­age­ment fos­ter humil­i­ty, not pride.

2. Ver­bal­ly Affirm Them
Dear broth­ers, honor those who lead you. They work hard among you and give you spir­i­tu­al guidance. Show them great respect and whole­heart­ed love. I Thes­sa­lo­ni­ans 5:12
Not only should I use my mouth to encour­age pas­tors, I should also use my hands. I can write a card, send a gift cer­tifi­cate, com­pose an encour­ag­ing email, or post on Face­book and Twit­ter how much I love and appre­ci­ate those who lead the church. I can brag on them in pub­lic and pray for them in private.

3. Con­sis­tent­ly Defend Them
Do not lis­ten to an accu­sa­tion against a pas­tor (elder) unless it is brought by two or three wit­ness­es. I Tim­o­thy 5:19
At some point, peo­ple won’t like some­thing our lead­ers say or do, and they will talk about it. When we hear these com­ments, we should quote this verse and explain to the gos­siper and any­one else who is lis­ten­ing that we won’t put up with that kind of harm­ful slan­der against our pastor. I did this once in a restau­rant when some­one was berat­ing a good friend of mine. I warned him twice to stop. He refused. And I caused a scene when I rebuked him for his cow­ardice (any­one can talk smack about a leader when the leader isn’t there). You wouldn’t let some­one talk about your kids or spouse in front of you. Get your pas­tor’s back!

4. Love Their Fam­i­ly
Being the spouse or the child of a min­is­ter is akin to being mar­ried to sol­dier who is per­pet­u­al­ly deployed. They are on a mis­sion and fam­i­ly can get overlooked. Every­one else wants and needs some­thing from the pas­tor, and their fam­i­lies often get the leftovers. Try to under­stand the fish­bowl that they live in and reach out to them with gifts, cards, words of encour­age­ment and offers to help with small tasks. Invite the pas­tor and his wife out for cof­fee or lunch. Have them in your home. Have their kids over on a Sat­ur­day to play so he can rest and pre­pare for Sunday. Babysit so they can go on a date. Trust me…if you want to appre­ci­ate your pas­tor, love on his wife and kids.

5. Faith­ful­ly Bless Them
For the scrip­ture says, “Do not muz­zle the ox while he is tread­ing out the grain” and “The work­er deserves his wages.” I Tim­o­thy 5:18

Gen­eros­i­ty is a bib­li­cal principle. So is bless­ing and tak­ing care of those who lead us spiritually. Find out what your lead­ers enjoy and pray about giv­ing it to them as a gift. This is above and beyond their salary. Here are some ideas…

*a gift cer­tifi­cate to their favorite restau­rant or shop
*an iTunes gift card
*an overnight trip to their favorite get­away
*a sur­prise party on their wed­ding anniver­sary or the pas­tor’s anniver­sary at the church
*tick­ets to see their favorite team, musi­cal, play or con­cert
*an invi­ta­tion to use your beach house or moun­tain house as a get­away when they need time alone

All my best friends are pastors. I am a pastor. I love pastors. And I know that the more we honor and care for our lead­ers, the bet­ter they will love and shep­herd and serve us. They win and we win, and ulti­mate­ly God is glo­ri­fied and His church is advanced. Let’s fol­low God’s instruc­tion by lov­ing on our leaders. Pas­tor Appre­ci­a­tion month is a great place to start.

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