Summary: If churches want to help their leaders be all they can be, they must pay them well, treat them fairly, and pick them wisely.

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When I get a chain letter in my Email, I usually ignore it; but sometime ago, I came across this chain letter, which gave me a chuckle. It was written to church members looking for the perfect pastor. It said…

“The perfect pastor preaches exactly 10 minutes, but thoroughly expounds the Word. He condemns sin roundly but never hurts anyone’s feelings.

“He works from 8 a.m. until midnight and is also the church janitor. The perfect pastor makes $40 a week, wears good clothes, drives a good car, buys good books, and donates $30 a week to the church.

“He is 29 years old and has 40 years experience. Above all, he is handsome.

“The perfect pastor has a burning desire to work with teenagers, and he spends most of his time with the senior citizens.

“He smiles all the time with a straight face because he has a sense of humor that keeps him seriously dedicated to his church. He makes 15 home visits a day and is always in his office to be available when needed.

“The perfect pastor always has time for every church board and committee. He never misses any of their meetings and is always busy evangelizing the unchurched.

“The perfect pastor is always in another church!

“If your pastor does not measure up, simply send this notice to six other churches that are tired of their pastor, too. Then bundle up your pastor and send him to the church at the top of the list. If everyone cooperates, in one week you will receive 1,643 pastors. One of them should be perfect.

“Have faith in this letter. One church broke the chain and got its old pastor back in less than three months. (Source Unknown)

That letter is obviously written tongue-in-cheek, but it does illustrate the difficult task to which church leaders are called these days. Even so, the church can help its leaders be the best they can be. The church can help their pastors be better pastors and their elders be better elders.

You say, “Phil, How?” Well, if you have your Bibles, I invite you to turn with me to 1 Timothy 5, 1 Timothy 5, where God’s Word talks to churches about how to care for and encourage its leaders.

1 Timothy 5:17-18 The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, “Do not muzzle the ox while it is treading out the grain,” and “The worker deserves his wages.” (NIV)

How can we help our leaders be the best they can be? It’s simple, first…


Make sure they have an adequate salary. Take care of them financially.

Church leaders have a tremendous responsibility. God calls them to “stand before” His people. That’s what the word “direct” literally means in vs.17. Church leaders are those who stand before God’s people to lead them, to be in charge, to give direction to the church. They’re the ones responsible to manage the church to see that it follows God’s will.

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