Meditations (Web)Church

A year (and a bit) in the life of NewSpring's first Web pastor

We need a lot more spiritual pit-stops to run the race

with 4 comments

This week, God has been reminding me I’ve never been very good at life balance.

Actually, I suck at it.

When I look at my life over the years, all I see are periods of intense hyper-focus followed by burnout. Sound familiar?

As a new pastor, I know I’m at the start of a very, very long journey, and I’ve got to be training for the marathon it will be.

God is clear that endurance is the critical thing if you really want to glorify God. And flame-out doesn’t say much about the rest and the peace that God is supposed to give you when he lives inside of you. Would you agree?

Endurance builds character and gives us hope (Rom. 15:3-4). It is also how we commend God (2 Cor. 6:4). Jesus mentions endurance three times in Revelation (3:10, 13:10 and 14:2)

So all week, I’ve been working on structuring my work, pastoral and personal calendars so that I can pace myself realistically.

What struck me immediately was how little margin I have given myself in my schedule, and I haven’t even started pastoring yet, officially. It freaked me out.

Then I felt God speak to me about the fact that “margin” requires time but it isn’t about time. It’s about filling in the spirit. Pretty obvious, I know.

We treat personal, daily devotional time as the “healthy Christian” requirement, and then we fall right back into thinking that, once we’ve done that, any extra drain we feel can be restored by relaxing (i.e. doing nothing.)

I know I need more than anything to learn to fill-up and top-up spiritually multiple times a day and multiple times a week, in short and long stretches of time.

Now I want my “adventure” to be letting Jesus teach me all the strange and wonderful ways that can happen.

Got any ideas?

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Written by NickCharalambous

January 29, 2009 at 11:05 am

Posted in ruminations

4 Responses

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  1. Great post :) Has definitely made me think about how I often have periods of intense focus and suffer burn-out. I have no other advice except scheduling time with God during your day along with everything else. Pause to take a prayer walk in your favorite place – I believe that’s what Jesus did, and he did it often.

    Jenean

    January 29, 2009 at 11:45 am

  2. This race takes endurance and that definitely requires frequent stops for “spiritual gas” (or petrol) Who says “petrol” anyway? j/k

    Balance is a huge pitfall of mine. I have to constantly monitor that gauge in my life. I wrote a little about it a few months ago while taking a pit stop. http://tinyurl.com/auo4vy

    …two guys comparing life to cars…this is ground-breaking stuff…ha! I kid!

    Chris Hill

    January 29, 2009 at 1:26 pm

  3. Hey Nick, I think this post is spot on. It always amazes mr how tired I can be after a nap, yes I’m in college and naps are cool again, or sitting around and doing nothing for an hour or so. Then whenever I’m more proactive with my faith and open up the Bible or other faith related books it always seems to energize me. For me it is not the times of sitting down and reading the Bible for an hour or two that really keep me focused all day. Now I’m not saying that it is a bad idea so sit down and spend some major time in the word, just that it has to be more regular than one sitting a day. The things that help me stay focused the most are the little things like reading select Christian blogs, reading Christian books, physically being able to see a Bible near me, or even just listening to Christian music while I’m walking around campus. I’m sure you already do a lot of that with you job and stuff but hopefully that can help a little! Keep up the good work man it is a blessing to know you!!!

    Craig Walker

    January 30, 2009 at 9:50 am

  4. Craig, I’m with you. We can’t possibly drink at the fountain of God’s “living water” enough — and constant refreshing is what’s important. Not just going there when we’re thirsty.

    ipiphanist

    January 30, 2009 at 10:55 am


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