What happens when a pastor is hurting?
What happens when the weight of ministry and the griefs of life accumulate but you can’t stop to tend to your wounds because you’re responsible for leading and feeding the Body of Christ? What happens when the accuser begins to lie to you–about God, about the people you trust and love, about yourself?
One of the focal points of globalLead came out of this question: who is pastoring the pastors?
Many people assume that pastors and ministry leaders can stand on their own. “They know God well. They have been trained in the Bible. They are strong in order to serve the rest of us.” Although the above can be true at times, pastors need to be pastored too. They struggle. They face hurts, pains, and stress like all of us–sometimes even more than us–as they carry the eternal and temporal weight of many others. And they often have no one tending to their souls, walking with them in accountability, lifting them out of dark places, and preaching the Gospel to their wounded hearts.
At globalLead, we are concerned about the internal and external areas of the lives of pastors and leaders. Psalm 78:72 states our desire for His spiritual shepherds,
“With upright heart, he shepherded them and guided them with his skillful hand.”
It is heavy responsibility–caring for the spiritual welfare of others–and it is not the Lord’s heart that His ministers would run so fast and so far, carrying so weighty a load, that they find themselves collapsed and crushed before their work is completed.
Great is any pastor’s passion for the Gospel, but great will be his burnout if he labors vainly and by his own power.
Would you pray this month specifically for pastors and ministry leaders regarding their personal relationship with God? Not for their church, not for their ministry with others in the community… but start praying for them personally. Pray that, while they shepherd others and tend to the spiritual needs of their congregation, they again lean on Jesus as their own great Shepherd who calls out, offering an easy yoke, a light burden, and rest for their souls.