I get excited when someone asks me a question like How do I write a tribute to the pastor? or How Can We Honor The Pastor?
Go ahead ask me the obvious question: "Why would such a question excite you, Chaplain Paul?"
There are several reasons for my joy over pastor appreciation efforts by someone stepping forward to make it happen. So here are some of the reasons for my spiritual excitement when someone wants to express a tribute to their pastor.
First, people wanting to pay tribute to the pastor are what I call Pastor Appreciation Champions. In contrast are those I call Pastor Bullies.
Every church should have a Pastor Appreciation Champion, positive people who understand that pastor appreciation is a sign of a healthy church. (Pastor Bullies on the other hand are usually people who think that being critical and faultfinding is a sign of spirituality.)
There you have it, the reason for my excitement when someone asks how to write a tribute to the pastor or give a pastor appreciation gift. In my book, they are a special breed of people, these Pastor Appreciation Champions.
May your church and your pastor be blessed by someone who has decided that expressing genuine gratitude to the pastor, to honor their pastor, is what they want their church to be famous for (you will have a reputation for something). We need all the pastor appreciation proponents we can get.
The second reason I am thrilled when someone wants to give tribute the their pastor, is that this desire to express gratitude for the pastor is an indication that they understand what GRACE is all about.
People wanting to honor their pastor understand the key concepts of the Gospel -- God's amazing grace and forgiveness. I thank God that you are obviously a person tuned into the positives of faith -- God's grace, God's love, and God's forgiveness!
Now obviously, you do not have a perfect pastor and expressing honor is definitely not saying that your pastor has no faults or shortcomings. I have news for you in case you missed it: Your pastor according to the Bible is a sinner saved by grace!
Giving a loving, pastor appreciation tribute is a celebration of God's grace and mercy. Pastor appreciation is not so much a vote for the pastor as it is a vote for God's grace, God's forgiveness.
A pastor appreciation tribute is not whitewashing imperfections of your spiritual leader, nor is honoring your pastor a spiritual cover-up of the pastor's weaknesses. Quite the opposite in fact, this business of a pastor's tribute.
Just think, you as another sinner, saved by grace, have an awareness that pastor appreciation is celebrating God's love, mercy, and grace. That means there is a powerful message in giving a pastor appreciation tribute.
So you see, thinking up creative ways to honor the pastor, says far more than "We think our pastor is special". You are saying through your pastor appreciation tribute "God is an awesome God, a God of amazing grace and life changing forgiveness".