If your specialty is praying for your pastor, he probably is aware of this. In my case, I was asked to fill this position. Perhaps it is a specialty that you have acquired on your own. It’s good for your pastor to know, but you don’t have to announce it in an awkward fashion. “Pastor So-and-So, I just want you to know that God has called me exclusively to intercede for you,” is going to make him feel you are a little weird. A better approach might be to let him know from time to time that you are praying for him, show that you care by encouraging him and his wife, and communicate things you are hearing from the Lord that will be of help to him. He’ll get the idea. After establishing some relationship, it would be quite normal to ask if there are specific things you can pray into for him, and the same with his wife, as you build closer connections with her. Their understanding of the heart you have for them, and the trust relationship that flows out of that, will be a gradual progression.
We’ve talked about interceding for them to hear clearly from the Lord and building a protective covering around them through prayer. What are some other things that you can pray about for them? Obviously, you will be interceding for specific requests that they communicate. If you keep your eyes open, you will see many more. Praying for a solid marriage and family life for them is very important. So is asking God to give them wisdom and discernment to handle the many people and circumstances that come their way. Much of what you pray will be given to you directly by the Holy Spirit.
I asked the Lord to take me into the war council room of heaven and show me His strategies on behalf of my pastor and church. I also asked that He would show me the enemy’s strategies against them, so that I could ward those off in prayer. Shortly after praying that, I began to receive revelation about future plans the Lord had for my pastor. I began, as well, to know when the devil had specific plots afoot to derail important aspects of my pastor’s ministry, and my husband and I would then do the necessary spiritual warfare to thwart those plots. Most of these things never get communicated until after I have seen them actually happen (or, in the case of demonic plans, until I see them thwarted), and many times not even then.
When I say that the Lord takes me into the war council room of heaven, I don’t mean that I have a vision of being there and seeing a room with all its details. Some people may experience that, but I haven’t as yet. I just know that God has shared vital strategic secrets with me.
I pray quite a bit for my pastor’s character. He and his wife already carry themselves in exemplary integrity, but I know that my prayers can always lift them higher still. It is more important to me that they be like Jesus in every situation than it is for their ministry to work out successfully. Although success in their ministry is vital, I’m more concerned about who they are on the inside than what they accomplish in life.
I have heard teaching that we are never to pray for God to change our pastor. This is true if we are praying out of criticalness toward him, or if we are annoyed with him because he is not doing what we want him to. But if we cover the weaknesses we see in him with prayer, desiring for him to be the best person he can possibly be in Christ, there is nothing wrong with that! It is all about what our motive is. I am my pastor’s cheerleader before the heavenly throne, in a sense. When I see him and his wife being like Jesus in the most difficult situations, I rejoice greatly, knowing that my prayers play a part in that. I pray for their character out of deep love for them.
Where God gives a specific ministry, He also gives anointing and authority to carry that ministry out. For those of you with the calling to intercede for your pastor, God provides a deeper level of authority to receive answers to prayer on your pastor’s behalf than He does for someone who does not possess that calling. Know that what you do is vital to the Kingdom of God, and that your prayers do make a difference. You can press heaven to obtain the answers you need and have confidence that God is serious about answering you.
Next time, we’ll conclude this series by talking about the priestly function of the intercessor.
Excerpted from Lee Ann’s book, The Intercessor Manual