God called you to something. He never said it would be easy. God-given dreams rarely are. Let whatever fuels you most fuel you again. This may mean you have to stop doing a lot of other things – even things people expect you to do – so you can better concentrate on what God called you to do. And, I assure you it wasn’t to please everyone. Plus, some of the stuff you are doing someone else probably needs to be – it’s could even be what God has gifted them to uniquely do.
Pastor burnout is a common problem in the church today. I hear from pastors on a regular basis facing the stress of ministry.
Here’s a common scenario, which can cause burnout to happen. These may be some of the more common ones I hear. Perhaps this is your story.
- The church gets to a certain level.
- Things start to slow down.
- The church stops growing.
- Maybe even slides backwards for a while.
- Money becomes tighter.
- People are complaining more.
- Everyone is asking the pastor “What’s next?” “What do we do now?”
- You’ve done everything you know how to do.
- You feel stuck – trapped – afraid – paralyzed – confused – overwhelmed.
And, this is just one scenario. There are so many others. It could be the church is still growing – even rapidly, but the pastor is doing more now than previously. There never seems to be an end to the growth. People are demanding more and more from the pastor – there’s pressure to continue the increases – but, it feels like life is always going to be running out of control.
Pick your own scenario, but I know this – if not careful, the stress will quickly cause the pastor to:
- Become more sensitive to criticism and stress.
- Stop reading and learning techniques and strategies.
- Quit taking risks – for fear of messing something up.
- Become protective – maybe even isolated from others.
- Develop excuses for every challenge.
- Respond defensively to every challenge.
- Begin to question your abilities.
- Work harder, but not smarter.
No doubt, even if only a few of these are true, these are impacting every area of your life – including your family.