I recently had a conversation with a friend who is just plain tired from life and ministry. It got me thinking about the necessity of rest in the form of a regular Sabbath as well as down time and time away.

God set the example for this and we shouldn’t take it lightly. The danger in ministry is that your social life and job are so blurred, that you don’t know what is a cookout with friends from small group and what is work.

I don’t have this tension solved or life figured out, but I thought I would share some thoughts and things people have invested in me. None of these are original thoughts and I would love some feedback or input…

  • Most men work at their jobs 40-50 hours a week and if active in their church would also give 10 hours. Because of this I try to live by a guideline of 50-60 hours since I attend my church and work their.
  • Our office shuts down so I am blessed to have every Monday off to take my Sabbath. I take a Sabbath based on working hard on the other days and the hours adding up to the total in bullet one.
  • I take all the vacation time I get. For the last 5 years that has been 2 weeks.  This January I will start getting a 3rd week away and will take it even if we can’t afford a traditional vacation for that week.
  • My job description says that I am supposed to take a spiritual day away every quarter so I protect these days and take them to stay refreshed.
  • I have friends outside my church. I am blessed to have tons of friends and even people my age in my church but sometimes I just want to hang out with people from the Vineyard or Baptist church.
  • I regularly dialogue with those over me about my health, expectations, and job description. This one is major don’t miss it.



      • Still seems a little high for the average Joe. I might wonder if an additional four hour commitment in addition to Grace Group and Sunday is a little much. I wonder if that amount of serving is part of the problem with burnout. I can see Sunday, Grace Group, and a few hours, but 4 additional seems like a lot to be the standard for people who have families. If that’s the standard, I’d bet it’s set by some people who are over committed.

  1. How about saying that you regularly cut the hair of a pastor friend and his kid and bounce ideas off him. That’s relaxing right?

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