Yesterday, the church where I am interim pastor (and a member) affirmed our candidate for our next senior pastor. I’m excited about the days to come, and I’m honored to support him and pray for him. Maybe one of these ways to pray for a new pastor or staff member will help you to pray for long-term leaders, too:
1. That he will have courage to preach the Word. This task is not going to get easier in the years to come, so I want to know I’m always praying for the man who leads me and my family spiritually. We need him to give us God’s Word.
2. That his family will experience a healthy transition. Generally, a pastor and his family are moving to a new location and a new place of ministry. When his family loves that transition, a pastor’s work is much easier. I pray for his marriage and his parenting in these changing times.
3. That he will model consistent, growing, godly living. All of us who pastor must set the example as we shepherd the flock. We who are the flock thus have the responsibility to pray the enemy will not win in our pastors’ lives.
4. That he will have a quick read of church culture. I realize that understanding a church is a ministry-long journey as the church grows, but it helps when a new pastor can evaluate his new congregation’s culture quickly.
5. That he will experience quick connections with the church staff. It’s not always easy to become someone else’s “boss” almost overnight via a church affirmation. Healthy church staffs, though, can make all the difference in the world as a congregation looks toward the future (and, if you’re interested, here are some posts about healthy church staffs).
6. That he will have a unique ability to remember names. People matter. Their names matter. When a pastor identifies members by their names, he grants them significance and value. Many of us, though, have to work at this task.
7. That he and his family will develop genuine friendships in the church. To this day, I still have friends I pastored over 30 years ago—and I count them incredible gifts of God to me. Pastoring is more fun when you’re pastoring real friends.
8. That he will know God’s vision for the future. The best pastoral leaders I know have a clear vision for what they believe the church should become. They believe in that vision, promote it, and lead toward it.
9. That the ministry he has left will sense God’s comfort and leading. The excitement of one church in gaining a new pastor is often the pain of another church losing their beloved leader. We’re all in this Great Commission task together, so we need to pray for each other’s congregations.