Oftentimes, we are quick to approach our pastor to pray for us and our families.
And while we should go to our pastor for prayer – we must remember the massive weight they too are carrying around.
In fact, a new study reveals shocking details about the practical distress many pastors say they’re experiencing. Here’s what the study found.
Without meaning to, we sometimes can elevate our pastor into “spiritual beings” – regarding them as holy men who have it all together.
But the storms of life don’t discriminate – they hit all of us. And those in leadership are especially under attack.
Not only do pastors have the privilege and responsibility of shepherding and teaching God’s flock – but they have other daily responsibilities too – just like everybody else.
And because everyone goes to their pastor with their struggles and problems – many are feeling burned out like never before.
But on top of the emotional weight of helping others walk through their burdens – they’re getting hit on a physical level too.
In fact, a Lifeway Research survey showed 55 percent of Protestant pastors felt “overworked” and “overcommitted,” while another 47 percent admitted it was hard to take time away from the job for personal hobbies.
And when it comes to self-care like healthy eating and exercise – pastors admit they’re struggling in a major way.
Christian Headlines reported:
“While most pastors are quick to say they have several challenges in caring for themselves, they are also quick to prioritize ministry needs ahead of their own,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of Lifeway Research.
“Among categories that need attention today, almost two-thirds of pastors put skills, people or ministry difficulties ahead of their own self-care. Constantly working from a physical deficit is not a sustainable formula for pastoral ministry.”
Of course, in order to be able to serve others well – basic needs like eating well, exercise, and proper sleep need to be met.
So when you see your pastor at church next Sunday, or in Bible study, ask them how you can pray for them.
While many pastors have their own accountability teams to help process personal issues – your pastor is guaranteed to be touched knowing you are thinking of them.
As Lifeway Research stated:
“Pastors live in a world of unfinished tasks. When they lie down at night, there are phone calls that should have been returned, sermons that need to be prepared, office work left undone and administrative things unfinished, church members who are expecting a visit, and problems that needed attention last week. If pastors cannot turn these off at the end of the day, they will not last in the ministry.”
So remember to pray for your pastor and his family – they need your prayers more than you might realize.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” – John 3:16-17
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