Friday, October 7, 2011

October Is Pastor Appreciation Month

Who is the loneliest person in your church? It just might be your pastor.

In a recent survey, the Fuller Institute of Church Growth reported the following statistics:

· 70% of pastors surveyed had no one they considered to be a close friend.
· 80% felt that their ministries negatively affected their families.
· 75% reported a serious stress-related crisis at least once in their ministry.
· 50% felt unable to meet the demands of the job.
· 90% felt inadequately trained to cope with job demands.
· 70% had a lower self image than when they started in ministry
· 40% had a serious conflict with a parishioner once a month.
· 50% had considered leaving the ministry within the past three months.

If your pastor is typical, he works 60 or more hours a week and he does it cheerfully and graciously for considerably less compensation that other professionals with comparable education and qualifications. He and his family are closely scrutinized and highly criticized. He is called on to perform countless duties and receives little appreciation. One research group has identified pastors as “the most frustrated people in America.”

Their pressures are tremendous. We expect them to be sensitive counselors, dynamic orators, charismatic motivators, model spouses, ideal parents, and expert CEOs. But most of them entered the ministry in response to the call of God to simply preach His Word and care for His people.

When was the last time you thanked your pastor? October is Clergy Appreciation Month. Why not show your appreciation by dropping a card or treating him to dinner? Or, if you are so inclined, you might give him a paid vacation to Tahiti.

“(Those) who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching.” I Tim. 5:17

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