Aug 10, 2011

How a Small Fan Can Save Your Ministry

Recently my TV suddenly stopped working.







 




I called the repairman. He came out and diagnosed the problem. It had overheated. He said it was a common problem for that model. The TV didn't have sufficient air moving behind it to keep it cool and eventually it burned out. He was able to repair the damaged parts and get it going again.

Before he left he said, "Here's how to ensure that it doesn't happen again. Put a small fan behind it that blows directly into the vent. The air will keep it cool and prevent it from burning out again."

Not wanting the TV to burn out again, I followed his advice and put this small fan behind the TV.  Bingo! No more burnt out!












As I reflected back on the incident, I learned some lessons about ministry.

What happens behind the scenes is the most important thing. I didn't know anything was wrong until the TV stopped working. Your success and longevity in ministry depends on what you are doing behind the scenes just as much, if not more, than what you are doing out front.

We must have fresh air blowing into our lives if we are going to avoid burnout. What are some of the fans we need in place to keep from overheating?
  • A walk with God. We must spend time with God in prayer and reading His Word. 
  • Rest. Take your day off. Use your vacation time. 
  • Quietness. Taking time to get away from technology and spending time meditating, reflecting, and being still before God.
  • Spending time with family and friends.
  • Attending worship as a worshiper instead of a worker.
  • Laughter and fun. Do you have a life outside of ministry?
  • Boundaries. Learn to say "no."
Eventually what is going on behind the scenes will manifest itself in front of others. If we have secret sins that no one sees, they will eventually be exposed. We must confess them and forsake them now.

If we neglect to keep fresh air blowing into our lives, it will cost us. It can cost us our ministry, our family, our marriage, and our testimony.

Be preventative instead of reactionary. If I had known how to avoid the burnout, I could have prevented it instead of repairing it. Don't wait until you are sitting on the counselor's couch before you decide to get fresh air blowing into your life. Don't wait until you're frazzled before you decide to take the necessary steps to get the air flowing. If you wait, it may be too late to avoid burnout.

Each month over 1,500 Pastors quit ministry. So...how are you doing? Are you on the edge of burnout? Are you just starting down that path?

Go grab a fan. Get some fresh air blowing into your life. We need you in the spiritual battle with us.

Posted by Dale Hudson

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