Church Pastors are in desperate need of five things, and it isn’t your money. They need a protected day of rest, deeper connections, constructive feedback, fellow peacemakers, and grace-extenders to succeed in life and ministry.
You can help your pastor to avoid burnout by addressing these five things.
Church Pastors Are Desperate For A Protected Day Of Rest.
Sunday is not a day of rest for a Church Pastor or staff. It is often the busiest day for a pastor and their staff. It is a day filled with interruptions and personal interactions that can drain the energy of even the fittest.
Because of this, your pastor needs a designated day of rest that is not Sunday. There will be exceptions and interruptions, but the scheduled day of rest should be honored if possible.
Recognize that protecting the pastor or staff person’s family time is an absolute necessity and not solely the pastor’s responsibility.
Church Pastors Are Desperate For Deeper Connections.
Church Pastors need professional, casual, and spiritual connections.
Professional Connections. They need fellow pastors who will understand the stresses they are going through. They may need a counselor or mentor in their life.
Casual Connections. They are hungry for healthy, authentic relationships with people inside and outside the church. If they are fortunate, they will find individuals within the church who will love them unconditionally.
But they need and long for relationships not based solely on their role as a pastor.
Church Pastors often encounter difficulty in locating relationships outside the church. They may not have the opportunity to identify and develop these relationships.
Some casual connections will behave differently and even withdraw once they learn that their new acquaintance is a pastor.
Spiritual Connections. They need time to spend alone with God. Even a minister’s relationship with God can become complacent and cold.
Church Pastors Are Desperate For Constructive Feedback.
Tearing a pastor down is relatively easy. It takes great skill to build them back up.
What is the difference between constructive and destructive feedback?
Constructive feedback considers time, place, receptiveness, and spiritual trajectory.
Approaching an individual moments before they are to deliver a message is not the proper time. You can schedule an appointment to talk to them at a more convenient time.
There are some settings where constructive feedback is inappropriate due to issues of privacy. Very few people respond well when publicly criticized and will often become defensive.
Most people are not receptive to feedback while standing in the hot sun or late for a scheduled appointment.
Observing their spiritual trajectory can help determine whether this input is needed right now or postponed. An individual needs time to digest and act on the feedback they have already received.
Destructive feedback is a one-sided unfiltered conversation that is swift and brutal. It is an attack without warning, where the messenger often retreats without waiting for a response or acknowledging that they might be incorrect in their conclusions.
Church Pastors Are Desperate For Fellow Peacemakers.
Maintaining unity in the church is hard work.
Although church members share common beliefs and goals, they are not immune from conflict. The existence of conflict in the church will not surprise those who had read about Paul and Barnabas‘ head-butting on their missionary journey.
The variety of gifts and personalities present in the church can be a rich blessing or fertile ground for disagreements.
Pastors can spend a significant portion of their time repairing relationships between their church members.
Peace-keeping is time-consuming and emotionally exhausting work.
Often these disputes could have been resolved by other members of the church policing their behaviors and not encouraging division when it presented itself.
Church Pastors Are Desperate For Grace-Extenders.
A grace-extender is an individual who extends unmerited or earner favor to someone who does not deserve it.
Many Church Pastors are skilled at extending grace to others. When a church member makes a mistake and feels shame and guilt, the pastor is often the first to arrive, extend forgiveness, and unconditionally love them.
However, the same Church Pastors who provide grace so freely to others may have difficulty realizing they have not found or received the same measure of grace for themselves.
An admission of the need for grace can be especially difficult for pastors. They know better, but pastors can quickly become performance-driven. They can begin to base their self-worth on how well their church is doing.
And when they fail to measure up to their internal standards, they can become overly critical of their shortcomings and failures.
But no one is perfect: we are all in need of continual grace.
The Church Pastor needs individuals to offer and extend grace, especially when they are unaware that they need it.
CALL TO ACTION
Perhaps you are in a position to help your church’s pastor.
You can regularly remind them that they need to have a protected day of rest and speak up when you see it neglected or abused. You can help them find deeper connections by being a better friend. By speaking to them as you would like to be spoken to, you can give them the gift of constructive feedback. You can be a peacemaker and an extender of grace to your pastor, others, and even yourself.
You can open up a fresh dialogue by sharing this article with them.