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Monday, February 07, 2011

Loving your leaders

There seems to be something going on in the Barron house. Strangely, it has hit Lisa and I at the same time. I don't know what name to give it nor can I give you all of the symptoms. But it has a striking resemblance to spiritual warfare.

This may shock you (or it may not) but pastors and their families go through this quite frequently. For years I have warned young men and women that when they decide to become leaders in the church, they put a bulls-eye on their back. They make themselves a prime target for the enemy. So, neither Lisa nor I are surprised when the enemy rears his ugly face and decides to strike.

What makes it hard is when he goes after both of us at the same time. If you were at RCC, you picked up on the "funk" yesterday. Lisa had a bad Saturday. I had a bad Friday. We both had a bad weekend. By the time I got to church yesterday, I was simply praying that God would get me from one minute to the next.

I can't tell you how much it meant to see the people who reached out to Lisa, who prayed for her and encouraged her. That's what leaders need when these dark moments come (and they WILL come). I want to encourage my non-Ridgie readers to think about what I just described to you as it relates to your pastor and other church leaders where you are. They need you. They need your prayers. They need your encouragement.

So as I sat here this morning thinking over the last 3-4 days, I started to think about my other friends in ministry. Guys who have invested in me and love me. Our church planters from Minnesota to North Dakota to Thailand. I thought about younger guys who I have tried to invest in. Each serves in leadership. Each fights their own personal battles as they follow after Christ. Each is dear to me.

I want to invite you to love on your church leaders today. It doesn't have to be extravagant. It won't cost you a thing. It may be as simple as an email to say you prayed for them. Maybe it's a cup of coffee. Maybe you can offer a compassionate ear as a leader's spouse finds a safe place to unload her worries and fears or to talk about his struggles. Whatever it is, remember, they are people too. They carry a tremendous burden for you and a huge responsibility before God. And, just like you, they need to do life in the community of other Christ followers.

Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you. Hebrews 13:17 NAS

As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by failing to pray for you. 1 Samuel 12:23 NIV

1 comment:

Chrissy said...

Hey... turn your shirt around and move that target to the front. At least then, you see him coming. Praying for your family!