We all need heroes, people whose character we admire. A good hero inspires us to praise God and to become more like Jesus Christ, the perfect Hero. The hero you need is in your community, but probably he or she is hidden from you. It’s a pastor.
In our world today this is shocking news! On a list of the most respected jobs in America pastor was ranked below every other one except used car salesman. Times have changed. Fifty years ago the local pastor’s sermon was likely to be printed up on the front page of the newspaper as a source of wisdom and encouragement that everyone needed, but today we ridicule pastors as hypocrites in our media.
Kristi and I have the privilege of spending time with all kinds of pastors and we often find ourselves inspired by and thanking God for the ways they care for people and honor Christ. The Bible teaches that these ministers are worthy of “double honor” (1 Tim. 5:17).
Examples of Hero Pastors
Here are a few of the hidden hero pastors that Kristi or I talked with recently:
John is a small church pastor who would greet you with a smile and a readiness to help you in whatever way he could. Recently a seven-year old girl whose father had died asked him to take her to the Father-Daughter dance.
Vicki pastored faithfully for three decades before starting a ministry of Bible teaching and healing prayer. Everyday she secretly prays for many people, including Kristi and I and the pastors we help.
Ed is painting a widow’s home in his neighborhood for free. He also volunteers in his community to be a CASA friend to troubled teenagers in his community. He spends quality time with them.
Joe is a pastor who travels the world to speak to groups and pray for people in Jesus’ name. He’s also a pastor to many leaders. He refused all ministry opportunities for one month so that he could care for his wife as she recovered from surgery.
Susan (not her real name) lives a frugal life, but she’s a photographer on the side so she has a very expensive camera, which she readily loans to the students she pastors.
Bobby is a public personality but he makes time to feed the homeless when no one is watching.
Tim is ministering the compassion of Christ to a young woman whose husband died unexpectedly. He’ll be leading the funeral.
Frank is on call 24-hours a day as chaplain for the police department in the city where he pastors.
Jeff pastors in an inner city neighborhood that most people try to stay away from. He walks the streets meeting people and praying for them. He meets with locals in coffee shops to encourage them.
Lisa meets with women to listen to them, pray for them, and disciple them to Jesus Christ. She welcomes groups in her home for retreats.
What You Can Do Now
The Apostle Paul urges us: “Dear brothers and sisters, honor those who are your leaders in the Lord’s work. They work hard among you and give you spiritual guidance. Show them great respect and wholehearted love because of their work. And live peacefully with each other.” (1 Thess. 5:12-13)
Think the best of your pastors. Speak well of them. Participate in their church with gratitude and generosity. Pray for them. Doing these things will bless God, them, and you.
“What You Can Do to Support Your Pastor” is a short devotional I wrote in response to people asking me how they could best bless their pastor. It’s a simple shift of thinking and praying that could dramatically improve your experience of attending church.