Prayer For our Pastor
Your Pastor Needs Your Prayers
The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. (James 5:16)
There’s rarely a day that I don’t pray. At 5:30 in the morning, en route to the gym, I praise God for his fresh mercies and steadfast faithfulness (Lamentations 3:22-23); I pray for my wife’s safety (Psalm 91:1-2) as she departs for school to teach a group of spirited first-graders; and together, we pray for our son each night before bed (Proverbs 22:6).
What I don’t do enough is pray for our pastor.
Prayer tends to return to the same people and petitions, except for those times when an urgent request is brought to our attention; it holds our focus for a few days or weeks until we hear otherwise, or the prayer fades from memory. wise, we often think someone else is praying for the pastor. Surely, he has a dedicated group of people that are praying for him and his family on a daily basis, right?
While this may be true, whether the church size is 100, 1,000, or or 10,000 people, every pastor will benefit from the faithful prayers of every soul he is responsible to steward. In short, your pastor needs many prayers from his congregation—including you—but three readily stand out:
1. Pray for your pastor’s humility and wisdom.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. (James 1:5)
There’s an eloquent simplicity about this verse. Ask God, and he will give generously. He will bestow the pastor in pursuit of wisdom a generous portion of it. “If you should say you want a great deal of wisdom, a small portion will not serve your turn, the apostle affirms, he gives liberally,” says Matthew Henry.
In addition to drawing near to Christ through the Scriptures regularly, wisdom comes through conversations with trusted people. An elder board. A deacon board. Fellow pastors. Laypeople.
“You will seldom rise above the quality of people who surround you,” says Bob Merritt, Senior Pastor of Eagle Brook Church.A wise pastor asks others for their thoughts before making decisions that impacts the church as a whole.
The desire for wisdom implies humility. James says that the man who lacks wisdom will ask God; conversely, the prideful man, puffed up and arrogant, will ly shirk from kneeling before the Almighty. He will go his own way. Consequently, pride precedes his destruction (Proverbs 16:18). But the Lord will lift up the humble pastor (James 4:10).
So pray for your pastor’s humility and wisdom! Pray that he would spent time in God’s Word and with wise people. Pray for his fight against pride.
2. Pray for your pastor’s mental and physical health.
For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you—that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine. (Romans 1:11-12)
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, an estimated 19.1% of U.S. adults had an anxiety disorder within the past year, and an estimated 31.1% of U.S. adults experience an anxiety disorder at some point.
Meetings with elders and deacons and members, budget sessions, counseling others through hardship, visits to the hospital, presiding over funerals, and preparing for the week’s sermon can induce major stress upon the pastor.
Consider the apostle Paul. In 2 Corinthians 11, he spoke of imprisonments, beatings, shipwrecks, hunger, and exposure to the elements. This man feared for his life, but still felt “anxiety for all the churches” (v. 28). To know that a man Paul struggled mentally is a boon for the weary pastor as he faithfully navigates mental and physical hardship through the power of God.
Your pastor needs the prayers of your whole church for fresh strength. “He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength,” writes the prophet Isaiah (40:29).
“They who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength,” he adds two verses later.
Regular prayers from your church body for an increase in strength will help your pastor keep fighting the good fight of faith against the enemy’s schemes.
3. Pray for protection against the enemy
A few years ago, my pastor spoke of a family trip in the mountains of north Georgia. During a bike ride, his wife tumbled to the ground after losing control downhill. She struck her head, and the next 24 hours became crucial. Needless to say, that was a long night for him. He prayed—how he prayed. Others prayed. Thankfully, she fully recovered, and quickly at that.
Whether Satan played a role in the fall of the pastor’s wife is not for me to say, but make no mistake: The devil despises every follower of Christ, especially those who want to advance his glorious message of redemption.Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8)
But through fervent prayers for our pastors, we (and he) can stand firm, submit to God, and resist the enemy’s deceptions and lies (James 4:7).
God Works through Your Prayers
In the words of 18th century minister Gardiner Spring:
Let the thought sink deep into the heart of every church, that their minister will be such a minister as their prayers make him.
Surely God will lift up ministers to be effective and far-reaching in spite of churches with minimal prayer. Yet, the pastors who lead a regularly praying church will see God work powerfully as he expands his kingdom and draws many to his Son. Spring also writes:
How perilous is the condition of that minister then, whose heart is not encouraged, whose hands are not strengthened, and who is not upheld by the prayers of his people!
[Photo Credit: Unsplash]
Will you help your pastor with the Great Commission (see Matthew 28)? Pray for his wisdom, physical and mental health, and his protection against the enemy. Pray that God will give generously to him, because your pastor prays for you.
8 Prayers You Should DESPERATELY Pray For Your Pastor
Pastoral ministry is a business un any other. It is a dangerous business. A sacred business. A business where the souls of people are at stake.
I was a pastor for many years, so I have a feel for the perils and pleasures of ministry. It’s very hard, supremely rewarding work.
Gardiner Spring said:
It is at a fearful expense that ministers are ever allowed to enter the pulpit without being preceded, accompanied, and followed by the earnest prayers of the churches.
It is no marvel that the pulpit is so powerless, and ministers so often disheartened when there are so few to hold up their hands…When the churches cease to pray for ministers, ministers will no longer be a blessing to the churches.
In light of the challenges of ministry, here are 8 prayers every church member should pray for their pastor(s) on a regular basis.
#1 – For Protection From Satan
Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8).
If Satan can take down a shepherd of God’s people, the odds are much higher that God’s people will scatter. That they’ll become bitter and disenfranchised. They will question everything they’ve ever been taught by that pastor. Satan targets pastors because the damage is exponential if they fall. Pray for your pastor that he would be kept safe from Satan.
Father, please protect my pastor from the attacks of Satan. Give him the strength to endure temptation and stand firm against the accusations Satan loves to whisper in his ear. Help him stand firm in your service, always fighting for the faith and for his people.
#2 – For Protection Against His Own Sinful Heart
But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death. (James 1:14-15)
Pastors don’t fall because one day, the blue, they decide to dive headlong into sin. The slide into sin happens slowly, over time, in small increments, as the pastor believes the lies presented to him by his flesh. Pray for your pastor that he would be on guard against the lies of sin. Pray that he would have a proper fear of God.
Father, please protect my pastor from the deceitfulness of sin that we all are so prone to. Guard him from sin. Keep his conscience tender and fresh. Keep him close to you and close to your word.
#3 – For Deep Spiritual Encouragement
For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine. (Romans 1:11-12)
Pastoral ministry can be brutal, discouraging work. Pastors find themselves in the midst of terrible situations on a regular basis – divorce, death, apostasy, and much more.
It’s also challenging because they don’t see progress in the sense that other jobs do. Christians are always in progress. Because of this, discouragement and depression can be a regular companion of the minister.Pray for your pastor to be encouraged.
Father, please encourage my pastor by the power of your Spirit. Let his soul be refreshed with the love of Christ. Let him have faith for the future. Help him to keep pressing forward even when the way is littered with landmines. Let him be refreshed by the fact that your grace is sufficient for him.
#4 – For Wisdom
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. (James 1:5)
Many elements of pastoral ministry are not black and white. A husband and wife are in serious conflict, and the husband has one story while the wife has another. A church member needs financial support but has a history of mismanaged finances. A young man struggles with same-sex attraction while still wanting to follow Jesus. Pastors need God’s wisdom to navigate these gray areas.
Father, please give my pastor your wisdom. Help him know the way to go even when the way is not clear. Give him discernment to know good from evil, even when evil is dressed as good. Help him apply your word to even the most confusing situations.
#5 – For Doctrinal Faithfulness
By the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, guard the good deposit entrusted to you (2 Timothy 1:14).
Pastors can be tempted to modify or even abandon biblical doctrines for a variety of reasons. Cultural pressures, vocal church members, even legal actions can press hard upon pastors, making them feel that the only way out is to give up the clear teaching of Scripture. They need God’s grace to stay faithful to the good deposit of God’s word.
Father, I pray for my pastor that you would help him hold fast to Scripture, even when everyone else tells him to let go. Help him stand on your word and only your word. Protect him from the temptation to abandon the precious truths laid out in Scripture.
#6 – For A Healthy Body
But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified (1 Corinthians 9:27).
Ministry can take a tremendous toll on a pastor’s body. Yes, our bodies are temples, but they are often broken temples.
Long nights at the hospital, high-stress situations, and ever-present discouragement can quickly lead to burnout and body betrayal.
Not only do pastor’s need spiritual strength, they need physical strength as well. Pray for your pastor that he would be sustained in body and mind.
Father, please give my pastoral supernatural strength. Protect him from sickness and disease. Give him your energy to keep serving faithfully. Help him to find periods of rest and recovery. Guide him to still waters.
#7 – For A Strong Marriage and Family
Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive,for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church (1 Timothy 3:2-6)
Church history is littered with the skeletons of pastors whose marriages and families fell apart under the strain of pastoral ministry. And as 1 Timothy states, if a pastor can’t manage his family, how can he manage the church of God? Satan loves to sabotage a pastor’s family, and your pastor needs prayer that God will give him a healthy marriage and family.
Father, please give my pastor a supernaturally healthy marriage. Strengthen the bonds between him and his wife. Encourage them both in ministry. Give both of them wisdom to manage their family and to keep you at the center, not ministry. I also pray for their children that you would let them know you and follow you.
#8 – For Meaningful Friendships
A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24).
Pastoral ministry can be surprisingly lonely. Something about being in a position of leadership isolates the man. People look to him to be a teacher and leader, not be their close friend. Pastors need close friends who will encourage them, hold them accountable, and push them toward Christ.
Father, please give my pastor true, deep, sustaining friendships. Give him friends who stick closer than brothers. Who uphold him when he’s weary. Who help carry his burdens.
Sustained By Prayer
In some ways, pastors are sustained by the prayers of their people. Obviously, God is the one who ultimately sustains pastors, but one of his primary means is through the prayers for pastors.
When it comes to why you should pray for your pastor, take the words of Charles Spurgeon to heart:
No man can do me a truer kindness in this world than to pray for me.
Do your pastor a true kindness today. Pray for your pastor.
A Prayer for the Pastors
The LORD once told me this scripture, is also spiritual!
I said to Him, “Oh my Father, I am so busy with the ministry! How can I visit people in jail and help them all with food and clothes and so on?”
“You give them MY food, MY water My bread My wine MY honey My oil. The ones who do not know how to cloth themselves with My Words, you give them MY solution and the strangers, (unbelievers or outcasts) you take them in and help them to learn to know Me.
Those in prison spiritual, you deliver by MY grace and through MY Spirit, that is also taking care for people!
Just listen and obey and do what I tell you to do!
Give what I want you to give and share what I want you to share!
Donate when I want you to donate.”
The Sheep and the Goats
“Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
For I was hungry and you gave Me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave Me something to drink, I was a stranger and you took Me in, I was naked and you clothed Me, I was sick and you looked after Me, I was in prison and you visited Me,’” Matthew 25:34-36.
A Prayer for the Pastors:
Abba, you showed me how many pastors out there are hurt.
Many of them have been wounded during their childhood. They had a father who put heavy expectations on their backs. No matter how hard they tried to please their Papa, it was never ever enough.
Some did not have a father at all. He left when they were young. Some were smothered in love and grew up with too much love and without borders and being disciplined, while other faced the opposite.
And now LORD, while carrying these kind of wounds in their hearts they cannot tend the flock as YOU want them to do. They do the same to their spiritual children, and because they are wounded themselves they run from building to building and travel and are busy to create their own wonderland.
To BE someone they never have been. LOVED!
I come before your throne Papa. You know all of their names.I cast out every evil spirit, I cast out hidden anger. Let it come out in the weeks to come. Let it be heard, so the Father can heal you!
Speak to HIM. Tell HIM in all honesty. Tell HIM your bitterness and loneliness and your drive to become someone! He will heal you and you will be the shepherd HE wants you to be!
First YOU need to know you are LOVED! FORGIVE your father, even when he was not there for you. He shares a same kind of story!
I pray LORD, the pastors will stand in their call. It is an awesome call to tend your flock!
I pray healing and deliverance also from the curses the line of ancestors and forefathers.
I pray a total turn around in your situation.
I pray new divine vision how to tend the flock Abba gave you!
I speak forth that as soon HIS love will shine over your pasture more people will come and listen to HIS word.
Abba can work then with sign and wonders! LOVE will break yokes. LOVE will break hatred. LOVE, HIS LOVE will conquer all!
I pray shalom and blessings over you in Yeshua’s (Jesus) name. Amen.
Blessings and Shalom over you!
~ Mamme DevorahCalled by Yeshua by the will of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
“Adversity is the spark that lights the matches, to glow the fire of self-confidence,” Catharina Schouten.
|Catharina Schouten–Meijer (Mamme Devorah) is the founder of Dezerto Floro Foundation – Desert Flower. Blossoming despite hardship! She encourages, inspires, teaches, and is training and equipping people. She goes wherever the Father is sending her! She is sent in the Biblical way. In 1995 the Holy Spirit set her apart, for the work to which He has called her. Pastor Hendrik – Jan van Mourik – Restoration Church – in the Netherlands, sent her in the apostolic and prophetic ministry in 2006. Rev. Paul van Beek God’s Outreach Ministry Int. sent her in the Deborah call in 2011. Ministry mandate: Isaiah 45 Deliverance, Rebuilding, Restoration.|
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