...So they will be called oaks of righteousness... Isaiah 61:3
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Signs of a Happy Pastor

Friday, October 30, 2015

Over the last few years I have had the joy of ministering to many pastors and their churches. We have ministered through Bible Conferences and through The Pastors Encouragers Conference. In fact over 100 pastors and churches have been touched by our ministry, Equipped By His Word. For that we are extremly thankful.

Through all of these events I have learned so many things. One of the things I have learned is how to identify a happy pastor. My desire is that every pastor be happy in the ministry the Lord has given him. But that is not always the case. I believe joy in the ministry comes from several ingredients. First of all there is joy in fulfulling the call of God on your life. A pastor must know without a doubt that he has been called to serve as a pastor. There are some pastors who are serving in this position because they love the Lord and His church. But just loving the Lord will not make for a happy pastor. I know some pastors who truly need to serve on a church staff. But they have not actually been called to be the pastor. It was just the circumstance in their life that led them to this position. And they serve week after week trying to preach and lead the church as a pastor. But in reality they need to be serving as an associate in some other area of ministry. That is a difficult position to be in.

Secondly there is joy in serving as a pastor when the pastor truly understands that he serves the Lord Jesus. Pastors minister to their church. But they are not servants of the church. They are shepherds of the church and servants of the Lord. A pastor must learn that he is only to please the Lord. Now this does not mean that he displeases the church. In fact when the pastor pleases the Lord other people who please the Lord will be pleased with him. The pastor really does not have the job of pleasing every one in the church. He will not be able to do that. And if he tries he will lose his mind trying to accomplish an impossible task. And I would say to church members, if you expect the pastor to please every one in the church you are going to be a very disappointed church member. In fact you should put yourself in that position. Ask yourself if it is really possible to please every one in the church? The answer is you cannot do that. It is absolutely impossible. So brother pastor, your job is to please the Lord. Pleasing Him will bring joy to your life.

But now on to the main point of this article. What are the signs of a happy pastor.

First of all, he smiles a lot. He smiles when he greets his people. He smiles when he walks into the pulpit. He smiles when he preaches. He actually enjoys the preaching and it is seen in his face.

Secondly, he loves his time in the office. He goes to the office on a mission. He is not just fulfilling his time. In fact you will find him there when he might be other places. This does not mean he rejects his time with his family or even pursuing his hobbies. He simply enjoys being at the office. He loves to study and get ready to preach. He is joyfully fulfilled in ministering to his people. He loves being in his place of ministry.

Thirdly, preaching is the joy of his life. For a happy preacher, preaching brings joy and confidence to his life. He was born to preach. And he can hardly wait to get to do it.

Forth, a happy preacher is not angry with his people. Yes, there are times when the people disappoint the pastor. There are times when he gets frustrated with them. There are times when he cannot believe what some of them do and say. But he is not angry. He realizes they are sheep. He understands that sheep need to be led and loved. A happy preacher is always letting his people know that he loves them.

Fifth, a happy preacher is content with his ministry in a particular place. He is not looking for another place to serve. This does not mean he is not open to the Lord if the Lord is ready to take him to a new place of service. But he never considers his church as a stepping stone for the next place of service. He loves where the Lord has him and is ready to give his life to and for the people.

Sixth, a happy preacher has a happy wife. The only person in the church who can really destroy his joy is his wife. The pastor and his wife are one in the Lord. So if she is not happy, he is not happy. Pastors wives need to be happy ladies. They will have much to do with the joy of the preacher.

What does all of this mean to the church family. You should look for signs of happiness in the pastor. I believe you have a job of helping bring joy to the life of your pastor. It is not your job to "set him straight". It is not your job to "see that he does his job right." It is certainly not your job to compare him to other preachers. Your job is to follow him and pray for him and to encourager him. If you see signs that he is not happy maybe you should ask him if there is anything you can do to bring joy to his life. Don't be over bearing. Don't come across like you are super spiritual. Don't tell him  you have noticed that he does not seem to be happy. Just simply ask him, "Pastor, is there anything I can do to help bring joy to your life?"

Friends, I can tell you as a pastor, who spent many years being made happy by my people, "there is nothing life being happy in the work of ministry."And there is nothing like being sad in the work of ministry. Would you make it your personal responsibility to make your pastor happy? I think the Lord blesses a church with a happy pastor.



Book of the Month

Each month Dr. Kersh will recommend a book for growing believers to read.  His purpose is not to endorse any particular ministries.  He is simply encouraging believers to be readers.

See this month's book here.