“Take a Break”

I think that one of the healthiest things to do is to “take a break” – to simply stop what you are doing, realign, reflect and recalibrate!  It is critical in ministry to “take a break.”  In fact, even Jesus did.  Matthew 14:23 tells us that Jesus “went up on the mountainside by himself to pray.”  Jesus moved away from the crowds to prepare himself, pray and pause.  If Jesus needed a break, then so do we!

Changing your position (where you are) often changes your perspective (where you can be)!

1.  Teaching Sabbatical
This year I took a 4 week teaching sabbatical.  It was the healthiest thing that I have ever done.  It allowed me time to prepare emotionally for the future.  Since that “break” we have experience growth on all levels.  What did you do for those 4 weeks?  We had 4 guest speakers – 2 live and 2 via video.  It was amazing!

2.  Ministry Sabbatical
I recommend that every full time pastor receive a 2-4 week sabbatical no less than every 5 years (in addition to vacation time).  I plan on taking a ministry sabbatical in 2013.  No office.  No teaching.  Simply a season to reflect, realign and recalibrate.

3.  Weekly Sabbath
This one is hard for me.  But God knew the pressure of life would intensify so he gave us a prescriptive – “Keep the sabbath day holy” = no work.  Each week we all need time to breathe and take a break.  As a pastor since 1995 I can tell you how vital this is to our personal spiritual, emotional, relational and physical health.  I try and enjoy my day off with my family … try!

I have a confession to make.  I am not superhuman.  I need a breather and need it often.  If I am not healthy in every area I will not be able to lead our church as effectively as I could.

Healthy churches are led by healthy leaders.

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