They wake at 5 AM, some as early as 3 AM so that they can first feed their souls with the daily bread and secondly spend hours in prayer for the flock that is under their care. They plead with God for the sheep. They want to see the sheep grow to be a Christ-like people. This is the heart of the Pastor which his flock doesn't know.
They see him smiling. They see him joyous. There are times when he may be hurting but for the sake of the sheep he wears a gentle face so as not to scare the sheep away. The flock doesn't know all this.
“Oh! Lets go and listen to him thunder,” says one member. “Yeah, I hope I don’t doze today. I slept really late yesterday,” replies the other. It’s Sunday. Pastor gives his exposition of God’s Word. Afterwards, he laughs with several people. Some members follow him to his office and he welcomes them. There is sweet fellowship with the Pastor for five minutes before the members leave. “That was a wonderful sermon,” says Mary, a young convert. However, the amount of time it took to prepare the sermon, the books and references he had to search for, this, the flock doesn't know.
Ting! Ting! “Hello,”answers Pastor Ben. “Hello, Pastor, our Son was involved in a terrible accident! We don’t know what to do. Is he going to die? Pastor, please help us. Please!!” The man of God hangs up his phone and quickly leaves the house. Within fifteen minutes he is in the intensive care unit. He comforts the broken; he prays for them and reminds them of God’s goodness in all things. Nonetheless, this man of God they saw walk into the Hospital ten minutes ago left home in the middle of a very good meal he has not had in long time. It is also a day in which he rests from his busy schedule. He also was looking forward to an early night sleep. Many times he has found himself in this situation. But for the love of Christ he left these God given pleasures to attend to the sheep. This again, the flock does not know.
John is angry. Why? He has lost it because his Pastor told him to end the relationship with his new girlfriend. “He doesn't know her,” grumbled the young man. “We get along very well. How can he say that she is not a Christian?” The Pastor has known Mary for a long time before John joined the Church. He also knows how much of a pretender she can be. His heart is to protect John but this, John doesn't know.
“He talks like he is perfect. You should listen to him preach. He thinks he is an angel,” said James. When the under shepherd is praying, you would think this is the most wretched man I have ever seen. He mourns for his own sin. Several times he asks God for forgiveness of his transgressions. At times he weeps like a baby when he is before the throne of grace. Sheep like James don’t know this.
Sometimes you would here statements like, “Some of these tuma Pastors just want money.” How can you decide to become a Pastor of all things?” However, the under shepherd being slandered left a Job with a huge salary in order to respond to God’s call into the ministry. Another had to battle the fact of living behind his desire to become an engineer. This, the flock doesn't know.
What is the point of all this? What am I trying to point out to us? Some “men of God” are foxes and pretend to love the flock. They do so with wrong theology and motives. You can see it from the mansions they have built for themselves, the kind of preaching they present. This can cause the flock to think otherwise.
On the other hand, there are under shepherds that seek to do the Lords will. They are passionate about the Lord’s work. Many times we do not appreciate the work these men do. We don’t know what they go through just to see to it that our souls are cared for. Not that we should glorify them but as members to play our role in making them serve with joy as Hebrews 13:17 states, “Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you.”
If you have a Pastor like this let me ask you these questions to help you see what I mean.
When was the last time you prayed for your Pastor? Do you pray for your Pastor? Is he a burden to you? Do you pray for his sermon preparations and delivery? Do you pray to God for his protection physically and spiritually? Do you pray for his family? You and I need to do so every so often. We too will be held accountable for we have a responsibility to honour such men.