As a pastor, I have the privilege of shepherding a flock of God’s people through prayer (1 Peter 5:2). Prayer is just one of many tools of a spiritual shepherd. While I have always prayed for the church that I serve, I have just recently started to pray for the members of my church systematically.
After I pray for them I stop and write a note to let them know I prayed for them. The note is not a request for a pat on the back, but a line of spiritual encouragement and communication. Handwritten notes are meaningful and welcome these days because they are so rare.
I pastor a “mid-sized church” which allows me to pray through our church directory about once or twice a year. A weekly and daily goal allows me to make consistent progress without feeling rushed. A family-by-family approach ensures that none is left out.
This practice has yielded benefits for me and the people I serve. Here is a list of the benefits in each category:
Benefits for me
- It helps me pray consistently.
- It helps me learn names and make connections between families.
- It helps me stay connected to quieter “sheep.”
- It helps me move people forward in their faith.
- It helps me encourage those who are struggling and hurting.
- It helps me update contact information.
Benefits for my church members
- It reminds them they are not alone.
It gives them a personal connection to their pastor.
- It allows them to focus on the positive side of their pain and problems.
It teaches them about the importance of prayer.
- It encourages families to talk about spiritual issues and the church.
It highlights the care of the whole church.
Churches come in all shapes and sizes, but they all need prayer. Pastors have the unique responsibility and privilege to shepherd their people through prayer. I hope this guide helps you pray for your church members more effectively.
Are you a pastor or a church member?
How often do you pray for others in your church?
How do you highlight the importance of prayer in your church?
Photo by Patrick Fore on Unsplash
3 thoughts on “Why I Pray for My Church Members and then Tell Them About It.”
May God bless you and your congregation through prayer for one another!
As a church member and having received a hand written note from my pastor, Jeremy, I cannot express enough the heartfelt sentiment and encouragement this deliverers. I am blessed to have a pastor burdened for his individual members and I lift my pastor and his family up in prayer as well as our other staff members.
A wonderful way to shepherd your people.
It lets them know each person is acknowledged and important
It’s not just a collective body to you.