October is pastors appreciation month and I wanted to take this opportunity today to say “THANK YOU” to every pastor. Seriously, I don’t care what denomination you belong to, what the size of your church is or what your preferences are in regards to a worship style…
The times you have woke up at night and could not go back to sleep because you were so burdened for the people in your church…and so for the next several hours you prayed for those whom God has entrusted to your care and they were not even aware of it.
The times of intense spiritual warfare that you have endured. You have experienced things that you don’t talk about a lot…but I know about the attacks on you and your family, the nightmares, the intense feelings of inadequacy…and yet you have persevered through them because you know that the ONE who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.
The conversations that you have had with people that no one will know about, the ones that took place behind the scenes, out of the eye of the public. You took the time to talk to that one person and did it because you care and not because you felt like you would be rewarded for it. It made a difference.
For the sacrifices that you have made that no one will ever know about. You have sacrificed time, personal preferences, money, sleep and your own reputation…you have paid a price that most people will never see this side of eternity, and the Lord IS USING your faithfulness to make a difference.
For the times you wanted to quit but didn’t. We’ve all wanted to quit (usually on Monday’s!) But Jesus pressed into you and you pressed on because, at the end of the day, you are consumed with Jesus and HIS GOSPEL…and you could not even fathom doing anything else.
For the times you have wept over the condition of people in your church and over people far from God. For allowing what breaks God’s heart to break yours.
For the days when you have dared to dream big and have refused to give up on the vision you know the Lord has placed inside of you.
For the times you have been criticized and slandered against by people who have never even met you and are clueless in regards to your heart for the Lord. They have misquoted you, taken you out of context and tried to destroy you with their word twisting and hate filled inaccuracies. And yet you have persevered, you have resisted the urge to fight with them, keeping your eyes on Jesus and refusing to come down off of the wall.
For ALL that you do! Seriously…you matter! YOU MATTER so much to God that He not only saved you but called you into ministry, He entrusted you with a gift, a calling and a message…and He is with you, He will NEVER leave you or forsake you. You can trust Him and He didn’t call you to flame out or burn out but rather to IMPACT this world through the preaching of His Son Jesus Christ.
You may feel overworked, overwhelmed and under appreciated…but I am here to say as a fellow pastor…THANK YOU! I don’t care if you have 15 people in your church or 150,000…what you do MATTERS! THANK YOU…I consider it an honor to be on the same team with you and it is my prayer that all of us will keep our eyes on Jesus and press forward as we have been given a job to do!
I love you guys! THANK YOU! YOU MATTER! Now let’s get out there and CHANGE THE WORLD!!!