I Prayed have prayed
Father, You have called our pastors to a higher standard. We pray that You would give them wisdom and discernment to avoid falling, God, and that You would give them strength when they are weary.

Over the past few years, the church has come under much scrutiny as its leaders have been exposed for sexual immorality and other sins. Recently, an entire denomination has come under fire for covering up decades of sexual abuse in the church. Sadly, this does not appear to be coming to an end anytime soon. As I was praying over these things and pondering how to even share about them, I was reminded of a series of dreams I had. Though I will not disclose any names, I will share the heart of these dreams, so that we can be united in prayer about this.

Have you taken your place on the wall?

 

September 2019 Dream

I dreamed I was inside a large church. I saw a man of God preaching — a well-known man who pioneered a revival. In this dream, as he preached, I noticed that something was wrong. He began to tug on his collar, as if he were uncomfortable. Finally, he fell to his hands and knees. I stood up to see what had happened; it seemed that the congregation had no idea — they just laughed as if it was funny. This man’s face looked terrified as he crawled on his hands and knees like an animal.

The scene immediately switched, and I was now seated in the audience of a televangelist I recognized. As some of the televangelist’s staff members spoke together, they mocked the man of God who had fallen in the previous dream. They had stacks of money before them as they counted the offerings and stuffed envelopes. I saw very large checks. Rather than displaying gratitude, these people were complaining. The funds were plentiful, but they were not satisfied; instead they were planning how to get more.

The scene switched again, and this time I saw some Christian worship leaders. They had considerable social-media influence but were using that influence in a way that did not glorify God. In secret, their lives were different from what they exhibited. But because they were leaders, their followers copied and imitated their behavior.

The Interpretation

Though men and women were highlighted, I believe these dreams are a rallying cry to prayer for pastors and the church. In the first dream, the man of God on his hands and knees reminded me of when Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar became like a wild animal (Daniel 4:25–35).

“What did you see?” the Lord asked me. “Pride,” I answered.

I believe that man of God represented the pride of the church. This man was once at the head of a mighty move of God. The opposite of pride is humility. If we ever expect to see revival, a pride-filled church will never see it, because pride glorifies self. We are called to be a church that is broken and fully dependent on Jesus Christ.

I believe this also serves as a reminder not to idolize the revivals of the past. The Azusa Street revival was wonderful, but that move of God was not His move for us today. We can get stuck looking back at the past, even when what we are looking at is something good. But what we need is a move of God for such a time as this!

With regard to the second dream, the Lord asked me: “What did you see?” I responded: “Greed.” Here again, I believe the Lord is showing us how we ought to pray. Yes, we are called to an abundant life, and yes, we are called to prosper — but we cannot serve two masters (Matthew 6:24).

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs (1 Timothy 6:10 NIV).

Having money is not evil, but loving money more than loving God is. The Scripture clearly states that greed, the lust for money, has caused many to leave the faith. We would be wise to heed the warnings God gives us.

Concerning the last dream, the Lord again asked me what I saw; I saw lewdness, but more than that, I saw an idolatry toward church leaders. Our leaders and pastors are men and women as imperfect as we are. Because they are people of influence, it’s natural that people want to be close to them and to emulate them. But then they are often elevated and treated as if they can do no wrong — like Jesus. To hold any human to that standard is to set them up for failure, because they are not Jesus. Your pastor does not want your worship; your pastor wants you to worship the Lord in spirit and in truth.

When I woke up, I felt overwhelmed. I was grieved for weeks. I sought God’s interpretation of what I had seen. As an intercessor, I have never shared the names of the individuals I saw in those dreams. Instead, I went to the Lord in prayer for each leader. As far as I know, they are still running the race for Jesus today.

Pray for Your Pastors

Pastors carry a load that many of us never will. They are responsible to God for the sheep they oversee. They have a greater responsibility, and the Lord holds them to a higher standard. This is why they are so often the targets of Satan. Jesus said this to His disciples, speaking prophetically about how they would respond when he was arrested and handed over: “ … I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered” (Matthew 26:31 NIV).

This is still true today. What happens to the shepherds (pastors) can scatter the flock (the church).

When a pastor or leader falls away from God or is publicly exposed in some sin, the church is affected. When a pastor is involved in any form of moral or ethical compromise, the church is affected. When a pastor comes under direct attack, the church is affected. This is exactly what Satan wants: He wants weak, compromised pastors and Christians; He wants a divided church.

I wrote this article with a mind toward all the exposure we have seen in this nation over the past several years. The exposures have been national, and even global, but we must humbly remember that judgment begins in the house of God. If God is setting things right in this nation, that means the church is no exception.

How Should We Respond?

When any pastor or Christian is thus exposed, one very human response is to point the finger of condemnation. A righteous anger over sin is acceptable. A feeling of sadness for a fallen leader is also acceptable. Condemnation is unacceptable. We are urged in Scripture to examine ourselves and not to let our hearts be lifted up in pride, lest we fall too (Galatians 6:1). This is where we, as Christians, must be careful. I do believe that we will continue to see God uncover everything that has been hidden, even in the church. We must guard our hearts from the pridefulness of thinking that these things could never happen to our leaders or to us. Intercessors, remain humble before the Lord. 

As an intercessor, your call is to a lifetime of standing in the gap for others. In simpler terms, we live to pray — it is like breathing to us; prayer is our oxygen. Prayer is our first response to any situation. We must not have any other gods before us, and this includes our pastors and leaders. Our worship, adoration, and praise belong to the Lord. This means our eyes must be fixed on Jesus Christ at all times: When times are favorable, our eyes are on Jesus; when all hell is breaking loose, our eyes are on Jesus. Intercessors, guard your hearts from idolatry. 

One Final Reminder

In the 1980s, two famous televangelists were publicly exposed for sexual immorality. Their fall was great, but both have since repented and been restored to full-time ministry. This reminded me of kings David and Saul: God had called both men to lead his people; both men sinned against God on more than one occasion. And yet Saul lost everything, including his kingdom, while David was the successor to that kingdom and is remembered as a man after God’s own heart.

What made the difference? The heart. Saul never took responsibility for his sins or demonstrated any genuine repentance. He cared more about his honor before the people. David, on the other hand, displayed the fruits of true repentance and showed that he cared more about his private devotion and worship before the Lord (1 Samuel 15:30 and 2 Samuel 24).

If any pastor or church is exposed in this way, our job as intercessors is to pray. It is up to the Lord to decide who will be restored and who will be permanently removed. Intercessors, never stop praying for your leaders.

I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth (1 Timothy 2:1–4 NLT).

Let’s pray together:

Father,

Forgive us for allowing ourselves to be so divided. Forgive us for being lifted up in pride.

Forgive me if I have allowed myself to become arrogant and proud.

I humble myself before You and ask You to examine my heart and search me. Point out anything You find offensive in my life. Create in me a clean heart. You said that You will never reject a broken and contrite spirit.

I cast off despair, division, anything and everything that is hindering me from worshiping and walking with You.

Forgive me, Lord, if I have idolized my pastors and leaders. They are only men and women, just like me. Forgive me for giving man the glory that belongs only to You.

I ask that You bless all pastors with wisdom, boldness, and strength — as leading Your people is no easy task. I pray that You would give them discernment like that of the sons of Issachar, to know the times and seasons we are in now, and to act accordingly.

Father, I pray that You would strengthen pastors who are weary. I pray that those who are compromised by sin would heed Your call to turn back wholeheartedly and serve You as they did at first. You are a merciful and long-suffering God, but You do not ignore continual sin.

Father, breathe on Your church; revive us once again. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Are you praying for pastors? And how are you praying for the church?

Author Gloria Robles is a passionate intercessor with a prophetic voice for today. For more from Gloria, go to Spotify or Anchor to listen to her podcast Something To Share. Photo Credit: Aaron Burden on Unsplash.

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Sharon A.
July 20, 2022

Praise God, for He is good all of the time. Recall this Word. For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7). Then add to this another scripture. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear; because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love (1 John 4:18).

Personally, my prayer for all who preach, teach, witness, pray and fast then spread the Gospel Message is to recall this Word of out Lord Jesus. “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”

Recall that it is Satan’s job to steal, kill and destroy godly folk. People who follow Jesus Christ have huge targets on their heads. Prayer cover is crucial for Christ followers.
Recall what the religious people back in that day did to Stephen in Acts chapter 7. They considered that they were doing God’s will. They stoned him to death because he pointed out their faults and held up Jesus Christ. Saul, who became the Apostle Paul was part of that mob back in the day.

Pray for discernment! Without God’s help and direction we, Bible believing people who call on God and support a church plus other ministries then consider ourselves followers of Christ. Please remember this —- Believe – NONE OF WHAT YOU HEAR AND ONLY HALF OF WHAT YOU SEE — in our social etc. life. GOSSIP is deadly. I have found that this serves me well. GO TO THEM – THE PERSON. Do not run to anyone else, follow the Scriptural recipe in St. Matthew 5: 22-24. (If it is through media, etc. keep a scrub brush
near by and cleanse your mind of such business). Believe the BIBLE. AMEN

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Lonnie
July 20, 2022

Decades ago, probably in the 80s when a couple leaders fell, I felt like God said that The Body held responsibilty too, if we weren’t holding these leaders/pastors up in prayer. I felt a repeat of that conviction recently. I’ve “begun” but I really need to step up higher into faithfulness.

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Glynn
July 20, 2022

That is such a cohesive well put together article. Obviously inspired by Holy Spirit.
I searched my heart before God after I read it. I received conviction and realized I don’t really pray enough for my Pastors or leaders in the church. Sometimes the focus is on the things that are making the most noise at the present time. Thank you for opening my eyes to an urgent need especially in these turbulent times. Many blessings.

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Glenda
July 20, 2022

Father after reading this post I think about all the times a pastor, worship leader, teacher, prophet, or evangelist has been exposed for their sins. It is so easy for us to lift up our necks in pride and arrogance. We condemn others while committing the same offense at times.

Proverbs 29:1 states, “A man who hardens his neck after much reproof will suddenly be broken beyond remedy.” Father one who hardens his neck; is incorrigible, and obstinately persists in those sins for which he is reproved. Your word states, “That neck will be utterly and irrecoverably broken without remedy.”
There are so many things that can happen including being paralyzed or death when a neck is broken. Help us to live a life well pleasing to You.
Father as people who lead others help us to live in such a way that we bring glory to You. Help us not to be puffed up and haughty but to live humbly.

Help us not to hold one another up in an idolatrous way but to be hands extended in times of need. Do not let pride, overtake us strangling the very life out of us. Remind us daily that money is necessary to survive but greed corrupts a person.

I believe the greatest housecleaning is coming! Please correct us now so we can be reproved but not broken without remedy! In Jesus name Amen.

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Lori Meed
July 19, 2022

Gloria, this is a topic also near and dear to my heart. As believers – especially as I yercessors – God is trusting us often with ‘inside information’ in order to pray but never to judge. God is looking for a Moses heart – a heart that, despite Pharaohs repeated breaking of his word and wickedness- will intercede for him over and over again. Jesus cried out from the cross, Father forgive them! They know not what they do!” That is to be our dry as well. We must, like Daniel and Nehemiah, identify with the sins of the church and cry out for mercy. Thank you for sharing those dreams. Powerful reminders of a sacred call.

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Laura Havens
July 19, 2022

Thank you for covering God’s way of dealing with sin in the body of Christ. My heart aches for those in backslidden situations and those not ready to repent and come clean before a holy God. May we ask for revival and unity throughout the believers in this world.

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Elaine
July 19, 2022

I just want to thank you for sharing that! That is so true in the church today! Including us the sheep need to be right with God! Very Encouraging that was beautiful I wonder if you write books thank you again!

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Gladys
July 19, 2022

Please pray for Africans pastors. They are called papa, prophets. And all kinds of names. People now worship them instead of God. They have replaced God’s word to the honor of themselves.
Lord have mercy on us.
I wrote a Book titled: Jesus is not in the bottle of Anointing oil or that man of Or that prophets. Jesus is the Living Word of God.
We should go back to his word.

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Darlene Estlow
July 19, 2022

Father, I lift up pastors all over this nation. I lift up the elders and deacons as well for it is important that they live their lives in honor to you as well. Ipray they would be filled by your Spirit, involved in prayer and your Word. Refresh those who are tired, let them seek your wisdom and may they love you above all else.

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Dona
July 19, 2022

Father, may Your Spirit fill our pastors with Your power, may they know that You are greater than the enemy. You are more then able to equip them with Your Spirit of revelation and truth. May they not be hindered by the elder or deacon board! May they have freedom to teach Your word without hindrance! Surround them with wisdom, grace, humility ! Give them the freedom You offer them because they know You! In Jesus name

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Sandralea Nieves James
July 19, 2022

We decree pastors in the United States will be filled with the Fire of God willing to speak truth and the truth about the culture and those that chose not to move with the move of God REMOVE them and replace them with men and woman of fire. In Jesus Name.

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Linda k Rice
July 19, 2022

Hebrews 6:4 It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5 who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age 6 and who have fallen[c] away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace. 7 Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God. 8 But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed. In the end it will be burned.

There are Davids and Sauls but there are also Jonathans.

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John perez
July 19, 2022

Amen ! I prayed for all our Pastors. I pray God turns this nation around to love , gentleness, and for many to be saved in the name of Jesus. Romans 10:13 . John P.

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Shasta
July 19, 2022

Amen. Thank you for bringing this to the much needed forefront of our prayer requests. This is so very needed in California, as it is globally. Lord Jesus intervene and rise up strong, God fearing men and women to lead. In the holy and precious name of Yeshua Jesus, amen.

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