Ministry leaders are exhausted and weary
Ministry leaders are exhausted and weary
I ran into a friend a few weeks ago and she asked me how I was doing. My response was, “I’m tired. We chatted for a while and I started to think and think about how many times I had responded with the same answer over the past few months. How many times have I thought about my exhaustion over the years? Often times I joke that I haven’t slept in twenty years and haven’t really rested since having children. While this is a joke, there is some truth to the weariness we can endure as ministry leaders.
Ministry is unlike anything you will ever do. You can’t compare it to a 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. job. Many of you still do this in addition to leading your ministry, bathing the children, balancing family chores, and doing your homework with the children. Ministry is by far my most demanding job, and there is a great reason for it. Satan wants you to quit. When you go from a simple quiet Christian to a Kingdom warrior, Satan is afraid. When you decide that you will make an impact in the lives of single mothers for Christ, Satan understands it. He understands that you are serious and he will do everything in his power to stop you. This means that when kids make a mess in their room, it annoys you a little more than before. When your coworker responds with an attitude, you’re just a little more distorted. Everything just feels harder and heavier than it was before you entered the ministry.
A lot of people will just quit when Satan puts the pressure on. Why do you think so many pastors resign after twenty years? There have been several studies, and a surmountable amount of research conducted has focused on pastors and the weight they carry. You are a pastor! You might not be doing it with the formality of the title or behind a chair, but make no mistake, it’s important work.
My best advice? Rest! Rest well and rest often. Set limits with the moms you serve and get them on board. Don’t allow them to call you at all hours of the night. Don’t internalize a fleeting criticism as eternal truth. Protect your physical, mental and spiritual being; don’t take their problems as if they were your own. And yes, I repeat, REST.
One of my many favorite scriptures is:
God’s promise to go into his rest still stands, so we must tremble lest some of you experience it. So, let’s do our best to get into that rest. But if we disobey God, as the people of Israel did, we will fall. Hebrews 4: 1, 9
God wants you to rest! He wants you to be regenerated through prayer, worship music, healthy boundaries, quiet walks, sabbaticals, and then… when you are rested, get up, grab your sword, and keep fighting!
Photo credit: © Photo by Nataliya Vaitkevich from Pexels
Jennifer Maggio is a national voice for single mothers and suffering women. His personal story has been featured in hundreds of media including The New York Times, Daystar Television, The 700 Club, and many more. She is CEO / Founder of The Life of a Single Mom Ministries, a national nonprofit organization that works with churches to develop programs for single mothers and currently serves over 1,500 churches.
The life of a single mother has served 406,000 single mothers over the past decade. Maggio is the author of several books, including The Church and the Single Mom. For more information visit www.jennifermaggio.com.
Jennifer maggio is a national voice for single mothers and harming women. His personal story has been featured in hundreds of media including The New York Times, Daystar Television, The 700 Club, and many more. She is CEO / Founder of The Life of a Single Mom Ministries, a national nonprofit organization that works with churches to develop programs for single mothers and serves more than 1,500 churches and 71,000 single mothers each year. She is the author of several books, including The Church and the Single Mother. She also hosts the podcast Single mom 101, which you can find on LifeAudio.com. For more information visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com or consult it Facebook and Instagram pages.