Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary
and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.
One of the realities of public ministry is it is demanding. The demand can drain you if you are not careful, leading to what is commonly referred to as “burnout” or “breakdown.” Perhaps you have experienced this during your ministry or leadership role. I can assure you from personal experience, leading when you are spiritually or emotionally depleted is not a good place to be.
My friend, Pastor Bret Allen, Superintendent of the Nor-Cal & Nevada District, recently wrote, “We acknowledge serving an all-powerful God. We also know that we serve through a position of dependency upon Him for our strength and ability. Yet ministers are experiencing burnout in record numbers.” He went on to speak of the need for renewal and rest.
This a perfect time in the ministry calendar to pause and take time to regroup and replenish. As ministers, it is vital that we become specialists in the art of replenishment of our body, soul and spirit. It is wise to understand our own pace and schedule times of rest and relaxation.
“Leadership Resources” recently listed some of the classic symptoms of breakdown to be alert to:
- Insufficient sleep and rest
- Spiritual dryness
- Loss of motivation for ministry
- Feelings of isolation
- Susceptibility to temptation
When doubts filled my mind,
your comfort gave me renewed hope and cheer.
Can I suggest something for each us to do? This summer let’s plan to take a break from the normal ministry schedule. Plan at least one week of vacation, take a road trip or drive to the coast or mountains for a few days. Your health, longevity and effectiveness in ministry depends on it. I believe you’ll be amazed at your increased energy, creativity and joy. Renew yourself before you ruin yourself.
You are loved!