A Heart for the People

Posted: March 23, 2011 in Uncategorized

This past week God has really broken my heart for the people I pastor, along with their friends and family. Every week we send out an email with people’s prayer request from the communication cards on Sunday and the ones taken during our life groups. I see the many prayer needs listed and know of many others that are not made public and sometimes it is overwhelming. So many people are hurting and it weighs very heavy on my heart. Monday when Carolyn sent the prayer list God broke my heart for the many needs and I wept asking God to intervene. All week it is like I have been carrying a heavy load, a solemn attitude has come over me and I have not been able to figure out what it was until just now. I thought maybe it was because of the financial responsibility of the children’s ministry expansion, or because I am behind on a few projects after being gone a week or possibly due to my being involved in something almost every night for over a month and not much change in sight. Though these things are on my heart and mind these are not the cause. The weight is because of the many burdens and hurts people are facing. Many good people are going through a hard time.

My prayer is for God to intervene. I would change things if I could but we all know I cannot. Where there are hurts God ease the pain, sickness God heal, sin God forgive, please God show up mighty and strong. From day one at Riverwoods church God has given me a pastor’s heart for the people more than anywhere I have served. In the Old Testament, the priest wore a multi-stoned breastplate and an ephod both of which had the names of the twelve tribes engraved on them (Exodus 28:5-30). These represented that the priest was to keep the people on his heart as he went before the Lord. It is an awesome privilege and huge responsibility to be the shepherd of a group of people. Please know that at Riverwoods we take your prayer requests serious and carry them on our hearts.

I used to be so growth oriented that I forgot about the people God had already put in my life. As a church planter and pastor it is easy to use people to help us reach our own goals and dreams. A healthy balance between reaching new people and caring for the ones God has already placed in our life is vital to sustained influence as a leader. As pastor, if people get the idea we’re just using them to make ourselves look good, or reach our own goals, they will be gone. Church leaders must have a heart for the people.

  1. Susan Baker says:

    Thanks, Bro. Darrin. I believe you have hit the nail on the head. So many of our own families/church families are hurting. Sometimes God’s people can get caught up in the hurt and pain and cannot shake the dark clouds that loom over our heads. It is comforting to know that you and others are lifting us up in prayer. I know prayer changes things, sometimes it does not really change our circumstances but gives us the boost to walk another day in our circumstances. I do not know if my burdens/concerns will ever be lifted but my hope and comfort comes from God and the prayers of His people. THANK YOU!!!

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