October is Pastor Appreciation Month. As we “Remember those . . . who have spoken the word of God” (Hebrews 13:7), I like to share a long-ago newspaper-clipped “Prayer for my Pastor” which I assume is anonymous. I have used it many times. “Dear God, bless my pastor today. Make him too big to be little; too wise to be foolish; too holy to be selfish; too spiritual to be worldly; too tall to get a chip on his shoulder; too dedicated to swerve; too zealous to be idle; too cultured to be course; too happy to be morbid. Save him from the love of big words, the fear of carnal people, the tedium of too many announcements. Deliver him from the rut of running overtime, the pit of pointless preaching, the evil of emotionless messages. Strengthen him when the tempter would lure him into sins shallow or deep; when he is the target of tongues whetted to a severe sharpness. Empower him with the Spirit of Pentecost to make him strong in the pulpit; with the Spirit of Christ to make him steadfast in weakness. Keep him from toning down the spiritual messages to please the worldly; from trimming down his sermons into sermonettes; from talking down to his congregation in display of conceited sophistication. Give him wisdom to wait when he does not know which way to turn; grace to begin when he does not know who will follow; courage to lead when he knows he’s right. Fill him with unction every Sunday; enthusiasm every Monday; and with the Holy Spirit every day. And help me to not discuss his faults with anyone but You, O Lord. Amen.”
Dr. Dan Crawford, Senior Professor at Southwestern Baptist Seminary, is the WestCoast Baptist Association’s Spiritual Life & Leadership Mentor. Follow Dan on Twitter @DrDanRC and Facebook www.facebook.com/dan.crawford.