in pursuit of jesus
a blog about student ministry, multimedia ministry, and leadership

Pastor Appreciation Part 1

October is Pastor Appreciation month and I want to say how much I appreciate my pastor.  Mike Shroades ( is an awesome man of God.  He leads with integrity.  Even though he has been burned in the past, he continues to give people opportunities to lead in the local church.  He builds teams so that the body of believers does the work of the ministry.  Pastor Mike has a heart to see people come to Christ and grow as a disciple.  He reaches out to people of all races and economic classes.  He is not scared of trying new things if they may be an effective way of spreading the gospel.   He has been a brother and a friend to me.  When I was on staff, he encouraged me to dream big dreams that only God could fulfill.  I pray that God blesses him more than he can imagine.  Do you have a pastor that you appreciate?  Have you told them?

2 Responses to “Pastor Appreciation Part 1”

  1. You are right. Pastor Mike is a phenomenal pastor. The years he was my pastor I grew tremendously in every area. Serving as an elder and working closely with him in the ministry was a tremendous privilege and blessing. He is one of the best leaders I’ve ever known, and I’ve known some good ones. He’s also one of the best friends a person can have. He helped me through some very tough times and a lot of very good times. Heck, we even broke a bed together. (Gotcha back Mike!) Martha and I love Mike, Laurie, Brooke and Mikey. They are an awesome family.

    My new pastor, Ralph Zigler, is also a tremendous pastor and leader. He studies the Word of God intensely to bring awesome messages each week (three times every Sunday). He’s a man of compassion with a tremendous heart to see people saved and discipled. His desire to carry out the Great Commission is seen in the many programs and small groups we have at Harvest Church (the one in Dothan). He also lets others lead. He asked me to teach a six-week course called “Sharing Your Faith.” I was excited when asked. Last Sunday night was our first class and it went great. I even left home before the Redskins game was over to be there to teach the class. 🙂 For those who know me, you know how big that was. (Redskins beat the Browns by the way, 14-11.)

    So, I’ve been blessed with two awesome pastors this past decade. I am a better person and leader because of them. You are right Justin, we need to tell our pastors how much we appreciate them. I try to make it a point to do that often, not just during October. Their jobs are extremely tough. It’s not just Sunday, Sunday night and Wednesday night. It’s 24/7.

    Thank you Pastor Mike and Pastor Ralph for enriching mine and Martha’s lives with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and your friendship. I love you both.

    – Ken

  2. Ken, thanks for your thoughts. The 24/7 nature of full-time ministry is grueling. It can be consuming and yet progress is rarely seen except on Sundays and Wednesdays. We should encourage our pastors on a regular basis.

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