I had the opportunity to do some teaching/training this week. Life-giving.
During one of the sessions, we were talking about how to avoid burnout as it relates to ministry.
“Remember your calling….recharge…pace yourself…”
I paused to reflect on these for a moment.
Remember your calling.
In the hectic pace of life, sometimes we get so focused on “what” we are doing that we often forget the “why”. Take parenting, for example, yes, I spend my days teaching, correcting, disciplining, exposing, adventuring – and these days are long. But, why? Often the “what” leaves me spent at the end of the day, crawling into bed exhausted, reflecting on the things that went wrong, what didn’t get accomplished, and promising to be better tomorrow. Until tomorrow comes.
But, my focus is wrong. It’s not the “what” that is the end goal, they are simply the details, the tools. The end goal and what keeps me motivated is the “why”.
Why do I do the things that I do?
We want to see our children grow up with a primary focus of learning to love God and love people. These days, when noble character seems to be a rare commodity, and arbitrary expectation, we want them to know what God desires. Loving Him will mean making decisions that will not break His heart – not perfection – but a heart towards doing what is right, because it is right, regardless of what others think, say or do. We want them to know what it means to love people – how to treat all as people created by God, worthy of dignity, justice, care and concern.
Now, how they do this will be a matter of their personalities, their natural bents, gifts and talents. Our role is to pray over them, and help them navigate the waters of life as much as possible before they are launched on their own. To help cultivate the strengths and interests that we see. We want them to be equipped to make wise, godly decisions. We desire them to be caring, concerned individuals who see the truth and live for it, who fight for justice, no matter what. Simply put, again, we want them learn to love God and love people, because this informs everything else.
So, my daily “whats” though occasionally tedious or monotonous or overwhelming or exhausting or all of the above are but building blocks, tools used to get me to the “why”.
So, today, allow me to ask you a few questions.
What “whats” are weighing you down?
What trees are blocking your view of the forest?
Go back to your why.
May you gain inspiration to press on just one more moment, because that’s all that we are guaranteed that we have anyway, the moment we are in.