What do you think about your pastor? Do you chew over his sermons and wonder if they are clear and helpful? Do you feel he spends enough time with you? In fact, do you ever catch yourself wondering what he does all day?
The truth is, often we think, "What can my pastor do for me?" Far less often do we think, "What can I do for my pastor?"
Former seasoned pastor, Christopher Ash, urges church members to think about pastors not just in terms of what they do – how they lead and pray and preach and teach and so on – but what about who they are. He encourages us to remember that pastors are people and to pray for them as they serve us.
Paradoxically, caring for our pastor will be a blessing to us as well as to them, and create a culture of true fellowship in our church family.
Seven virtues of church members that impact our pastors:
1: Daily repentance and eager faith
2: Committed belonging
3: Open honesty
4: Thoughtful watchfulness
5: Loving kindness
6: High expectations
7: Zealous submission
Somebody needs to really know your pastor!
Conclusion: Where do we go from here?
Where do you get lay leaders and people who know how to pastor their pastor and (in doing so) make him a better pastor? You could wait for them to miraculously appear (and I've had my share) or give out this book in great quantities. It comes from a pastor who understands the pulpit and the pew and who wonderfully reflects the grace of the Chief Pastor, Jesus Christ. This is a book that will make pastors weep for joy that someone understands and will make people wise for action of the most useful kind. We loved it.
Simon and Kathy Manchester
St Thomas' Anglican Church, North Sydney
Christopher Ash has an extraordinary ability to identify books which need to be written and then write them! This book shows his usual deft ability to combine Biblical truth, pastoral relevance, contemporary experience, personal insight, practical advice, deep honesty, and loving admonition and encouragement. We all need Biblical encouragement, and this will help people provide their ministers with much-needed support and encouragement. Praise God for this useful book!
Vicar Emeritus of St Jude’s Carlton, Melbourne, Australia; and former Principal of Ridley College Melbourne
Christopher Ash captures the biblical vision of the relationship between the pastor and the church beautifully in this short, readable and immensely helpful book. The blend of clear teaching, rich wisdom and his experience both as a pastor and a church member gives every page real authenticity. We were challenged and encouraged afresh to have soft hearts and to engage humbly and wholeheartedly in our local church family, and cannot think of anyone who wouldn’t be helped and challenged by reading this book.
Gary & Fiona Millar
Christopher Ash has a special knack of putting his finger on the sensitive nerve-endings of churches and their pastors. This book is no exception. It contains the wise fruit of many years of church membership and a wide knowledge of ministers and their ministry. If we will "read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest" these pages, both our churches and our ministers will be healthier and happier. Here is a book to be read by the leadership of every Christian fellowship!
Sinclair B Ferguson
Ligonier teaching fellow and Chancellor’s Professor of Systematic Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary
Christopher Ash has served churches well for decades now, at Cornhill, in a local church, through his writings (how about that Job commentary?!). Now he provides a most unusual service. A modern take on an old form—the Church Member's Handbook—Christopher has asked the simple question, "How can I love and serve my pastor, in a way that will do him, his family and our church good?" The answer is straightforward, biblical and life-giving. Careful and loving, this in fact IS a book your pastor wishes you would read (but we ARE too embarrassed to ask you). Thanks, Christopher!
Pastor, Capitol Hill Baptist Church, Washington, DC
I was delighted that Christopher Ash’s new book unpacks the overlooked exhortation of Hebrews 13 v 17, namely, that it is the responsibility of the sheep to make the shepherd's work a joy and not a burden. Christopher lays out seven ways to do so. I know of no other book like this—it is a "charge to the congregation" that is more specific and practical than anything else you will find in print.