Being a pastor is a high calling and an awesome privilege. It’s a tremendous blessing to spend hours studying and preaching the Word. It’s fulfilling to share in life’s most cherished moments with the families and individuals entrusted to our care. It’s rewarding to see broken lives and relationships restored, and it’s fun building teams and seeing the fruit of our labor. But, despite the privileges of being a pastor, it’s still one of the toughest jobs out there! I think Peter Drucker said that being a pastor is the 4th most difficult job in the world!
In his letter to the Thessalonians, Paul instructs his readers to “honor those who are your leaders in the Lord’s work.” The Greek word ‘honor’ has been variously translated as ‘acknowledge’ or ‘know.’ The term ‘oida’ suggests the idea of ‘understanding.’ To help you ‘understand’ your pastor, here are 10 things that church members ought to know about their pastors:
- Pastors frequently feel inadequate, unqualified, and unworthy.
- Pastors want to please their people (but can’t and/or shouldn’t always pull it off).
- Pastors feel intense pressure around plates & pews (because they know that’s how their success will ultimately be measured).
- Pastors tend to root their identity and worth in what they do and how well they do it.
- Pastors can get so consumed with the church that they forget the Kingdom.
- Pastors ‘think ministry’ 24/7 and often aren’t fully present with their wives and children.
- Pastors can’t excel at everything expected of them… and will drop the ball occasionally.
- Pastors often study the Word to preach it rather than feed on it for themselves.
- Pastors can project a public persona that’s way different from their private reality.
- Pastors easily fall into serving out of obligation rather than overflow.