Easter is right around the corner. Church leaders around the country are stressed out. They’re working too much and neglecting taking care of themselves. This is definitely a year-round problem, but “high-stress holidays” in the church (Easter, Christmas, back-to-school, etc.) tend to bring these problems to the surface. Not to mention that we know the opportunities we have this Sunday that we only get once a year, and we want to take full advantage of them. That puts us under even more stress and even spiritual warfare. Church leaders, take care of yourself this week. Then, put that into practice year-round.
Take care of yourself mentally
A busy mind is a mind that cannot rest. Usually, my mind rests the least when I am under-prepared. I may have not put my full effort into planning, I may know that some points in a service are weaker than others, or I may know that I have leaders that are still not 100% trained on what to do in an area. If I’ve put my full effort into these things, my mind rests a lot more easily. Take care of yourself mentally. Keep your planning and communication at a high level. If you can’t do that yourself, get help doing it. A second set of eyes, ears, or hands can go a long way. When this is kept up well, your mind can rest.
Take care of yourself spiritually
If you’re a church leader, I’m pretty sure I know when the last time you got to sit back and participate in a worship service was. Kids’ leaders, you’re probably with the kids. Worship leaders, there’s no way you can sit and relax knowing all the things happening behind the scenes. Pastors, you’re presenting the message, so you can’t really sit back and enjoy. And that’s OK. Sunday morning is not the time for church leadership to get fed spiritually. Ask your life group for prayer. Feed yourself. Maybe take some time to get into your element. Now, I am not a “get into nature to find Jesus” kind of guy, but I do like hunting and fishing. So, odds are, at some point you’ll find me on the edge of a lake getting some “spiritual revitalization.” Really, it’s just about the fun, the quiet, and the alone time. Take care of yourself spiritually, because no one else can do that for you.
Take care of yourself physically
Now, there are a lot of church leaders that are in tip-top shape. There are some that are not. There plenty that are in between. Don’t think I am saying that God can’t use someone that is out of shape. But, when you are keeping yourself in some sort of decent physical condition, it can make it easier. Especially worship leaders. Hear this, worship leaders: Leading worship is a physical activity. You need lung depth, and you need to be able to sweat for a while. Make sure that you are able to do that. Running helps me to relieve a little stress sometimes. Now, I haven’t done it in far too long, so I probably will soon. The point is that if you are taking care of yourself physically, the other pieces can fall into place a little easier. This also spreads into other areas. Make sure you’re getting sleep. Any church leader can tell you what happens when you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t sleep on Saturday. Sunday becomes that much more difficult. So, take care of yourself physically. Trust me, you’re going to need it.