I was in church this past Sunday. I say it like that because I am often unable to be in my home church due to my ministry, where I am speaking somewhere else on Sundays. But today, we were back with our congregation, and it felt so good.

February is missions month at our church, where we get reports from around the world where we are involved. This month we are seeking to raise $250 thousand to support ministries beyond our walls. As I watched and listened to our lead pastor, he shared about the work we are involved with in India. My mind wandered a bit as I thought of how that church in India is also meeting today. Around the world today, and each week, pastors are speaking at 37 million churches.

Pastor Derrick Hamre, CLA Langley

When people think about pastors, often the picture of a quiet and reserved person comes to mind. But what many don’t realize is that pastors work tirelessly behind the scenes preparing sermons and messages every week. Millions of pastors – men and women – stand in front of their congregations each Sunday, providing words of hope, help, healing, inspiration, and life-changing messages from the Bible.

Just imagine – pastors have to keep up with current events and use them as examples for their messages; they research sound theological insights, all while finding time to practice before presenting these sermons, attending meetings, visiting and leading teams! It’s no wonder pastors can become exhausted after preaching week after week.

As churchgoers, we should be more mindful and thankful for pastors who dedicate their lives to sharing the gospel. Speaking in front of a large crowd is just as terrifying as rewarding. Let’s take the time to thank pastors for giving us hope and inspiring us week after week! They deserve our deep appreciation and respect for all the hard work they put into each sermon.

Delivering the sermon is not the goal each Sunday. “Only half of the pastor’s work is to gather the people together for worship. The other half is to send them back to their daily tasks equipped to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world. If we forget this second part, the other can be positively dangerous.” – Leslie Newbigin

Let’s show pastors some much-needed love and gratitude by taking a moment out of our day to say “thank you”. After all, pastors are essential in keeping up the spiritual momentum that leads us closer to God – which really is lifegiving! You may be at a church with more than one pastor in which case we should also reach out to the entire team with appreciation. A small word, or note of encouragement goes a long way.

So next time you hear a pastor speak at church, remember how incredible they are and offer a prayer of thanks to God for them.

Thank you, pastors, for all that you do – may God bless you.