Pastors, your congregation members need some encouragement, too.
Pastors, your congregation members need encouragement from you too. (Flickr )

Most church members love their pastors.

Many church members are encouragers to their pastors. Pastors often lose perspective when a few critical church members become a persistent pain and challenge.

But most church members are indeed a blessing to pastors.

As we have conversed with church members across America, we have heard 10 common themes or requests they have of their pastors. None are unreasonable.

Earlier this week, we looked at 10 things pastors would love to hear from their church members. This time, let's listen to the perspectives of the church members.

1. "I love you." They want to know that you pastors love them in good times and challenging times. They want to know you really care for the sheep God has entrusted to you.

2. "I would love for God to give me a long-term ministry here." Church members desire for you to perceive your church as more than a steppingstone to the next church. Though they don't expect you to commit to a lifetime there, they are weary of the one- to three-year pastorates.

3. "I will provide clear leadership for you." Church members would like to know you are truly leading them. And they want to know where you are leading them.

4. "I will listen." They want to know you care enough about them to hear what they have to say. They want to know you truly value input and different perspectives.

5. "I will communicate clearly and often." Church members don't want to wonder what's happening in the church. They desire ongoing communication and transparency.

6. "I will be a praying pastor." Church members desire for their pastors to be in regular and prayerful fellowship with God. They want to know you are leading in God's power and not your own.

7. "I will focus on preaching." They understand the importance of the preaching of the Word. They want to know you have put hours of prayer and preparation into your message so they can truly understand what God is saying in Scripture.

8. "I will share my faith." Most evangelistic churches have an evangelistic pastor. Most church members will follow the lead of their pastors. They want to do as you do more than do as you say.

9. "I will care for you." Most church members are reasonable. They know you cannot be present nor should you be present for every ministry need. But they want to know you care for them, hurt for them and pray for them.

10. "I will not show favoritism." Church members sometimes see pastors demonstrating preference toward some church members over others. It grieves and hurts members to see pastors catering to the cliques, the big givers and the power brokers.

I see this list as reasonable and healthy. Do you agree? What would you add or take away from the list? Let me hear from you.

Thom S. Rainer is the president of LifeWay Christian Resources. For the original article, visit thomrainer.com.

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