At our church we have something called Members’ meetings. This is where, predictably, all the members get together and have a meeting. We talk church budgets, mission strategy, and church discipline. One part that I especially enjoy is the Q&A. They put up two microphones, a panel of pastors, and just let the members go at them.
One answer in particular stuck with me for a long time. Someone asked how the members could best take care of the pastors, how we could serve them. A few answers were given, but the one that stood out to me went something like, “read your Bible everyday, pray, tithe, and join a community group..” Very normal things. But the more I thought about this answer, the more I realized how much wisdom is packed into that statement. The way you help your pastors is not by doing extraordinary things, but by being a faithful Christian.
Imagine a counsel of sheep getting together, and loving their shepherd enough to ask him what they could do to serve him well. The tired shepherd would probably say something to the effect of, “try to stop walking off cliffs.” Because what mainly drains a shepherd or a pastor is damage control, trying to help people who are bent on running into the proverbial traffic. So what these spiritual disciplines do is guard you, ground you, and keep you from doing stupid things. Your pastor will generally always be rescuing someone, it would serve him well if that someone wasn’t you. So maybe the best way to serve our pastors is not some overt action towards them (although that is always nice), but rather to keep our eyes open and stay away from the edge.