Saturday Sermon: Support your local pastor
Before I entered the ministry, I loved to watch Lloyd Ogilvie preach from the First Presbyterian Church in Hollywood, Calif. I even wrote him once and surprisingly, he wrote me back a month or so later. But had I needed him to come to my hospital room and pray with me, or visit my mother in her final hours, I'd have been out of luck.
It's not unusual today to hear from numerous people about how much they enjoy watching Joel Osteen or Joyce Meyer or T.D. Jakes or any of a number of preachers with their television ministries.
And they are certainly gifted preachers, but when was the last time you asked one of them to pray for you during a time of crisis? Which of them would come to you with a word and a prayer as you prepared to go into surgery? And would they still be there with your family while they waited nervously for the doctor to come out and tell them how the surgery went?
Your local pastor is the one who may not preach like Osteen or teach like Meyer or get you going like Jakes, but your local pastor is the one who is there with you in the different circumstances of your life.
Your local pastor knows the community you live in and what's happening there. It's your local pastor who can respond to your call for prayer and can lend the sympathizing ear when the difficulties seem to never end.
There is something that your church has that the megachurches don't, and that is your pastor. He or she may preach less than perfect sermons. But he or she can speak to your current needs.
Your local pastor may not be the best at a lot of things, but let me let you in on a little secret: neither are Osteen, Meyer or Jakes. That's why they hire the support staff they need, so they can focus on what's they are best at and a sustained one-on-one ministry is not one of them.
Your local pastor deserves and needs your love, your prayers and your support. And the support I'm talking about is more than just your church membership, it's your financial support, your prayer support, and a "Thank you for being my pastor" every so often.
The Rev. David King is the pastor of First United Methodist Church of Palacios.