In the movie Remember the Titans, there is a memorable scene where the captain Gary of the newly racially integrated football team, the Titans, has to interview one of the black players to learn about his family. After three-a-day practices and lots of tension on the team, the conversation isn’t quite polite. Julian tells the white captain that attitude reflects leadership and with that, there is a change in the momentum of the team and how the team is able to pull together.
Attitude Reflects Leadership
There is a cycle going on in our churches in America. This cycle involves pastors getting busier and busier and people reaching out to them more and more.
I really believe that attitude reflects leadership. Pastors want and need rest. They have days off. And work cell phones. And they preach about resting like God commands us to at creation.
And at the same time, they are stuck in this cycle and someone needs to break it and pastors everywhere are hesitant to make the first move to break the cycle because they have these people needing them.
So, people of God, I’m asking you to step out and break the cycle. Someone has to make the first move and it needs to be us. We need to reflect the attitude that our leadership is trying so desperately to teach us.
Check out these ideas on how to help your pastor get some down time:
- Whenever possible, call the office, not him/her directly to set up an appointment time to talk. This will give them time to prepare for your conversation instead of taking up time they had planned to use on something else.
- Don’t call the pastor on his/her day off. Let them rest.
- Don’t call the pastor during his/her vacation. They need time off and away from church.
- Don’t call the pastor on holidays. They need time with their family just as much if not more than you do.
- Don’t expect a pastor to drop everything and come running to you. It may very well be an emergency to you. But your pastor’s priorities should always be God, his/her spouse, his/her children, then the congregation.
- Read communication (emails, bulletins, newsletters, etc) so that your pastor doesn’t have to spend time repeating information that has already gone out.
- Be on time to meetings. And if you’re going to be late, call. Not only is it courtesy, but it shows that you respect the extra time s/he is putting in.
- Ask your pastor what tangible thing you can do right now to help with something. Is s/he painting the house? Have copies to run? A committee that needs led? Do something to remove items from their plate, even if you can only help for an hour. It will be so greatly appreciated.
- Pray that your pastor would find rest and peace. And most importantly, time to be in the Word and growing their relationship with the Lord. It makes a huge difference.
And by doing some or all of these things, we are breaking the cycle and reflecting not only the attitude of leadership, but creating a new attitude of leadership as the people rising up in the church to love on pastors.
Can you think of any other ways to help pastors get rest? I’d love to hear them.