When a pastor begins serving a church, he or she comes with a vision the Lord has placed on his or her heart. In each case, this vision includes growing and expanding the church to reach more people for the sake of the Gospel.
However, oftentimes pastors’ days are filled with meetings, to-do lists, and administrative activities that take up precious time. This is time that the pastor could be fanning his or her vision into flame (2 Timothy 1:6). If a pastor feels too much pressure and does not have time to do the things he or she loves, leaving your church could be the end result.
According to LifeWay Research nearly 20 percent of pastors are leaving pastoral ministry due to burnout. Burning out in a profession these individuals once felt heavily called to is a staggering reality for the church. Out of all the reasons someone may decide to leave pastoral ministry, burning out should not be one of them.
So how can you make your pastor’s life easier? It is even possible to streamline all the tasks pastors need to accomplish? Luckily there are at least four ways to alleviate a few of the pastor’s burdens.
1. Implement a Strategic and Easy-to-Use Church Management System
ELEXIO was created with pastors and their staff in mind with the goal of streamlining church processes so that pastors can focus more time on what matters.
Most pastors are always on the go. If your church attendance records, member information, volunteer lists, and other key information are kept inside the church office, the pastor is constantly traveling back to or calling the office for the information he or she needs. What if rather than traveling back to the office or making a million phone calls, pastors can simply pull up the information they need on their phone? ELEXIO has created a way to make this happen. This not only saves pastors time, it also provides a way for pastors to stay in the know about what is going on in their congregation’s lives, and input any new information that may arise during their daily tasks.
Another key way ELEXIO can help your pastor is by creating ease in contacting volunteers. For example, let’s say a pastor goes to meet with a local widow in their congregation. She mentions she needs to move houses, but does not have the ability to lift and physically move anything. Rather than making a note and creating an email when the pastor eventually returns to the office, he or she can jump on their mobile church management system, type up a short message, and then send it to the volunteer list they have in their database. Creating an easy to use system for pastors not only helps save time, it also equips them for whatever situation may arise.
ELEXIO also has easy to use workflows that help pastors not only talk about their vision, but also provides the tools needed to make that vision become a reality. Contacting people in the church by voicemail, text message or email is simply done with this software management.
2. Separate the Pastor’s Vacation Time from Work
Pastors have conferences, retreats, continuing education, meetings, and many other activities some may misconstrue as a vacation. One way to motivate your pastor to take a breather is to encourage him or her to take regular vacations. Having personal time to decide what to do and what not to do helps relax an overly burdened pastor and creates space for that pastor to return refreshed and ready to tackle the lists awaiting him or her at work.
3. Understand it's the Pastor Who Works for the Church, Not His or Her Entire Family
Very few professions hire one person with the expectation that their entire family will also work for them too. Church expectations have increased when it comes to the pastor’s family and what all they will and will not be doing. Some churches expect for a pastor’s wife to be involved in weekly Bible studies, attend every event the pastor attends, write personalized letters to members of the church, make phone calls, visit those in need, etc. When it comes to pastors children, the expectations can sometimes be even worse with restrictions and stipulations. Having these expectations from a church can create more strain on pastors and stress in their home. If a contracting company hired a man to help build houses, that company would not expect his wife to decorate the home afterward or the children to grab a hammer and help build. The contracting company would simply expect the man to do his job and to do it to the best of his ability. If other professions don’t demand the entire family to work, why should the church? Alleviating this pressure makes the pastor’s job easier because it decreases the pressures at work and at home.
4. Ensure a Pastor Has Time to Rest
“There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.” -Hebrews 4:9-11.
God clearly lays out the importance of rest in his Word. Why should a pastor be exempt from this truth? Expecting a pastor to work Monday through Friday and then prepare for his sermon on the weekends is a tricky balance. If you went to the gym and walked on the treadmill all day, every day, you would eventually burnout and then quit. Encouraging your pastor to take a rest and understanding your view of the weekends and your pastors view of the weekends is different will help create space to make your pastor’s life a little easier.
Overall, your pastor’s goal is to shepherd your church into a deeper relationship with the Lord and to help spread the Gospel to those in need. Church management software can help keep him or her organized. Click here for a free demo of ELEXIO.