The elders who rule well are to be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who work hard at preaching and teaching. (1 Timothy 5:17, NASB)
Remember your leaders who have spoken God’s word to you. As you carefully observe the outcome of their lives, imitate their faith. (Hebrews 13:7, HCSB)
It is with great excitement that we at Impact Church corporately and individually honor our pastors during the month of October! Although sometimes they make the “hard work” of preaching and teaching seem like a Sunday (Saturday?) stroll in the park, Pastor Mike Davis (Reidsville campus) and Pastor Jason Davis (Greensboro campus) labor among us with tireless devotion. It is altogether fitting that we observe Pastor Appreciation Month in honor of our shepherds who faithfully lead the sheep throughout the year.
An English dictionary typically gives four definitions of the verb “appreciate,” so let’s see how those usages line up with what we want to accomplish this month.
- To be grateful or thankful for … Our hearts are filled with gratitude and thanksgiving for the loving, gentle way our pastors lead and serve. We recognize their God-given gifts and anointing, and we feel truly blessed that they have answered the Master’s call to build His Church here in the Piedmont Triad.
- To esteem, prize, value or hold in high regard… It’s not hard to be impressed when listening to our pastors passionately preach the Gospel, but those who take the time to get to know them more personally will value the Davis men all the more! These learned, seasoned men possess a wealth of knowledge and wisdom, and they are willing to share it humbly and freely.
- To be fully conscious or aware of,as in “to appreciate the dangers of a situation” … Unless you have served as a pastor yourself, none of us probably has an accurate understanding of the sacrifices made by those who carry the burden of our congregations. As we become more aware of how our shepherds lay down their lives in daily ways for the sheep, may we be reminded to lighten their load by praying more fervently for them.
- To increase in value… Few of us would say that we help to make the ministry of Pastor Mike or Pastor Jason more valuable. But as gifted as these men are, they’ve never led an empty chair or pew to the Lord! (Well, there were those times when Pastor Jason helped some stuffed animals find salvation!) We make their ministry more profitable by faithfully attending services, listening and growing and equipping ourselves to do the work of the ministry. In return, they get the opportunity to pour into our lives all that the Holy Spirit is revealing unto them. And can we not agree that our lives have been enriched — indeed, they have appreciated in value! — through their ministry?
The writer of Hebrews declared in 13:7 that it’s not enough just to remember our leaders. He instructed us to take a close look at their lives, then “imitate their faith.” We, too, believe that a more intimate examination of the lives of Mike and Jason Davis will reveal that these men walk out every day what they preach and teach. And we invite you to come follow them as they follow Christ!