When most people think of churches and Pastors, no doubt the focus is on Sunday. Yet with an average 50-hour work week, the Sunday service is just one part of what Pastor’s do.
A big fraction of the rest of their job is meeting people, some of whom are members of the congregation, others of whom are not. People don’t (or shouldn’t!) come to Pastors with an expectation that, like doctors, they are there with ready answers. What they bring instead of answers is hopefully a humble presence open to listening, one that points toward God and His infinite love.
So, what are 5 things you can call a pastor for help with?
Grieving: Grieving is part of life. Pastors are not there with advice per se but there as fellow travelers as we navigate the often-devastating losses we face on our journey. The losses are numerous, and the grief can often be complicated. Pastors can help with just a simple space to be heard.
Growing: “The glory of God is the person fully alive.” Sometimes we need someone just to hear us on our idea or an enlivening shift we see coming. That could include a call to a new line of work, opening a business, joining a non-profit. All part of growing!
Connecting: Modern loneliness is tough given how deeply connected and disconnected we are the same time. Pastors hear many stories of loneliness and can offer both a gentle ear and opportunities around service and small group that might, in some way, create more connection.
Celebrating: Some thresholds in life are totally worthy of celebration! These include weddings, baptisms, and new homes. Pastors can help people share a sense of sacred along with the joy of celebration.
Listening: The greatest gift we can offer each other is listening. In a world where we often talk past each other, conversations often suffer, and few feel truly heard. This is especially important for couples who seek pastoral counseling in rocky stretch. Good counseling whether it with a professional marriage therapist or a pastor should leave both sides feeling they were truly heard.