Monday, October 1, 2012

You Are Appreciated!

For many years now, October has been designated as Pastor/Clergy Appreciation Month.   I have been curious about how this yearly recognition originated.  So in this blog, I wanted to inform you (and some of you enlightened sisters may already know) about the history behind why there is a month designated to appreciate our devoted pastors who stand behind the pulpit Sunday after Sunday proclaiming the Word of God.  These committed servants also spend countless hours ministering to the flocks that the Lord has entrusted to them.  Many of us are married to these wonderful men, and I am sure we already appreciate them dearly. 
Most importantly, the recognition is scripturally based, as Paul conveyed in 1 Timothy 5:17, “The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching.” Likewise, in 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 he says, “Respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work.”  So here is how it all began……
The organization Focus on the Family officially named Clergy Appreciation Month in 1994.   The month of October was set aside as the time to honor a church’s pastor, including staff ministers, and their families.  The goal in initiating this observance was to make those who are called to minister to feel appreciated by those they serve; the overall intent was to be sure that the recognition of the pastoral staff and their families should become a normal part of a church’s ongoing care of these servants of God.
Now, my dear sisters, even though it’s officially called “Clergy Appreciation Month”, I believe that those of us who stand behind the man, supporting him, praying for him, and just being there when he needs us, well, hopefully we are APPRECIATED TOO!  As pastors’ and ministers’ wives there may be times when we may feel lonely or even undervalued as we serve with our husbands.  Yet, if you never hear anyone on this side of heaven tell you that your labor in the Lord is valued, one day you may hear our Savior say, “Well done!”

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