Saint Matthew Lutheran Church Warrens, Wisconsin
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OCTOBER IS CLERGY APPRECIATION MONTH!
Our pastor - Phillip Enderle
Clergy Appreciation Month?
Clergy Appreciation Month is a special
time that congregations set aside each year to honor their pastors and pastoral
families for the hard work, sacrificial dedication and multiple blessings
provided by these special people. It is typically scheduled in October, but can
be held at any time that is convenient for the church and the community. It
is also important to remember that appreciation, affirmation and prayer support
of our spiritual leaders is appropriate throughout the entire year.
Clergy Appreciation Month necessary?
The nature of the service provided by pastors and their families is unique. God has entrusted to them one of the most precious of assignments — the spiritual well-being of His flock. When a pastor becomes ineffective, the very souls of his or her parishioners are endangered. When eternity is in the balance, we should all be concerned.
Pastors and their families live under incredible pressures. Their lives are
played out in a fishbowl, with the entire congregation and community watching
their every move. They are expected to have ideal families, to be perfect
people, to always be available, to never be down and to have all the answers we
need to keep our own lives stable and moving forward. Those are unrealistic
expectations to place on anyone, yet most of us are disappointed when a pastor
becomes overwhelmed, seems depressed, lets us down or completely burns out.
What can we do?
Ways To Help Your Pastor,
1) Treat him with the proper respect. Treat him the same way you would a doctor, a lawyer, or a politician. A pastor's role is more important than all of these professional roles because he is God's appointed leader for you and your family. Therefore esteem him very highly in love for his work's sake. (1 Thess. 5:12-13)
2) Follow your pastor as he follows Christ. (1 Cor. 11:1, Heb. 13:7) Never blindly follow anyone, but always follow the man of God who is following Jesus Christ as set forth in the Word of God. (Phil. 3:17-21)
3) Pray for him often. (Eph. 6:18-20; 2 Thess. 3:1-2) You know how much opposition you receive from the world, the flesh, and the devil; your pastor receives even more, therefore, pray for him! (Scroll down to the next section called "Prayer" for a guide to praying for your pastor.)
4) Obey him as he admonishes you and teaches you the Word of God. (1 Thess. 5:12 and Heb. 13:17) These verses teach that you should submit, obey, and follow.
5) Do not speak against or listen to any gossip or slander about your pastor. First Timothy 5:19 reads, "Don’t listen to a complaint against a leader..." and Eph. 4:29 reads, "Don’t let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouth...." Proverbs 6:16-19 teaches that God hates for us to hurt people with words. Listening to gossip and slander is just as much a sin as speaking it.
6) Support him financially so he can keep his mind on the work of the ministry. (1 Tim. 5:17, 18 and Phil. 4:10-19) The ministry of the Word of God is twice as important as just making a living. If a man cannot properly care for his family, he will be distracted from the ministry. It costs your pastor just as much to live as it does you, and in some cases more because of the additional transportation and the way he is expected to dress.
7) Encourage your pastor. Tell him when he has helped you. Ephesians 4:29 teaches that we should speak that which edifies, or builds up. You minister grace to your pastor when you tell him how he has helped you. He will be a more effective, dedicated servant of God if you give him some feedback on his ministry to you. (Prov. 3:27) It will also be very encouraging if you tell your Sunday School teacher, husband or wife, and children how they have helped or been a blessing to you. Praise doesn't cost - it pays great dividends - in the home, in the church, in the school, and on the job.
8) Be patient and understanding with your pastor, his wife, and his children. Don’t expect your pastor or his family to be perfect; they are human. John 1:5 and James 5:17 teach that a man of God has the same human weaknesses and temptations that we all face.
9) Stay busy serving the Lord. This will bless your life and be a tremendous encouragement to your pastor. You have a spiritual gift, so use it. John 13:17 teaches, "Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them." Happiness doesn't come from knowing what is right; happiness comes from doing what is right. Therefore, serve the Lord.
10) Be a blessing to your pastor, your family, and all who know you by being a soul winner. People all around us are lost in sin, dying and going to hell. Do all in your power to win them to Jesus Christ. Tell them what Christ has done for you and what He can do for them. Reflect on what your salvation means to you and then realize that those who are lost in sin need the same joy, peace, assurance, and hope that you have.
For a guide to praying for your pastor, download the
following file titled "40 Ways Over 40 Days".
Click HERE to download.
(YOU WILL NEED ADOBE READER - FREE)
Everyone has a favorite homemade dessert. Do you know your Pastor's favorite?
If your Pastor has children offer to baby-sit. You can give them a FREE voucher to redeem within 24 hours notice.
Purchase a Gift Certificate for you favorite five star restaurant and leave it in the Pastor's Church Mailbox. It is nice to "take" the Pastor and his wife with you for dinner too but sometimes I think they might like a private romantic dinner. They may not otherwise be able to afford such an extravagant evening. Of course they would appreciate even a McDonald's gift certificate.
How about taking the Pastor to the clothing store where you get your suits and have him fitted for a brand new suit. Don't forget the shirt, tie, shoes and socks. If you can't afford that then maybe just a new tie might be nice. You might consider giving it as a gift from your Sunday School or Bible Study group.
You can make a gift basket with a "theme". Maybe Gardening or Bookworm themes. Just put all different and yet related items to the theme in a nice basket.
Symphony, Theater or Movie tickets would be a nice treat too. Don't forget Sports tickets.
A home cooked dinner delivered with candles and a nice CD for background music.
A gift certificate for a professional massage or even a manicure would be nice.
Gifts don't have to be extravagant or expensive to be special. Handmade items have their own special charm. Just make sure that your gift is from the heart and they will love it no matter what it is.
Simple Acts That Feed
Sometimes pastors are the loneliest
people in the church. Often their hours are long,
the pay minimal, the criticism
considerable and constant.
Paul's warning to "serve one another in love" (Gal. 5:13 ) should encourage us
remember our shepherds.
Here are eight ways to make their lives
a little brighter.
Pray for your spiritual leader's maturity and growth in the faith.
As you pray keep in mind this wisdom from German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: "If you treat a person as he is, he will stay as he is; but if you treat him as if he were what he ought to be, he will become what he ought to be and could be."
There was the time I started to regret not getting a teaching degree. A friend wrote a note to say, "Thank you for teaching me so much," reminding me a degree wasn't necessary to teach others. I remember the times I've felt wounded by grief and notes that said, "I care or I'm praying for you" lifted my spirits. I reread the notes that say, "You are a wonderful friend" when I'm feeling like a horrible person. It's amazing that a few words arranged in the proper order can bring such relief to an aching heart. I will always cherish those who serve me with their words.
Remember the Bible soundly condemns gossip and careless speech. James 1:26 says, "If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless." And Psalm 34:13 reads, "Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking lies."
people make their spiritual leaders defensive and angry by saying, "You need to
…" That approach is seldom welcome and almost always counterproductive. If you
see a need, approach your spiritual leader by saying, "I'd like to help by …" If
you see an area that can be improved, take responsibility for working on it.
Don't expect that your present spiritual leaders will do things the same way their predecessors did. Lay aside personal agendas and preferences. Instead, focus on how your leader is being used by God to do effective ministry now.
By serving your shepherds, you will ensure that they will not only be encouraged but will feel appreciated and continue to minister with enthusiasm and energy.
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This website was last updated on June 16, 2017.