I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers,intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone. 1 Tim 2:1
Charles Swindoll once said that leadership begins from the knees up. It's a clever remark that few would disagree with. We expect leaders to devote themselves to prayer for the ministry of the church and for its individual members.
Pray For Us
But leaders also need to be prayed for as Paul makes very clear. Being a minister, pastor, elder (or whatever term your church uses for it's overseers) is, without doubt, one of the most difficult responsibilities anyone can undertake.
It is not simply the workload of teaching and caring for people or endeavouring to move the church forward. Any leader who is making some sort of attempt to honour God in their ministry will find they face a spiritual onslaught like they've never faced before. The devil hates committed leadership and will do all he can to bring about its downfall.
It's vitally important, therefore, that the congregation pray for its leaders - for their spiritual well being; for the stability of their family relationships; for deliverance from temptation in the areas of sexual relationships, abuse of power and desire for money; and for all their needs to be met.
Think about it. When did you last ask your leader about whether they had any particular needs for prayer? When did you last ask if they were finding time to take a Sabbath each week? When did you last enquire whether their material needs were being met?
If you want to the see the church, of which you are a part, thrive, if you want to be blessed by the ministry of your leaders, you need to do your part. The ministers need to be ministered too. They need prayer every bit as much as the needy members of your congregation. They need to be loved and cherished, not criticised at every turn.
Prayer College Assignment
This Sunday make a point of praying for your leaders. But also take the time to ask them if they have any specific prayer requests. And don't make this a one-off exercise, repeat it regularly!