By Jonathan David Faulkner
Summer is here, and for our 10:31 writing staff that means it is time for three months of optional writing, website upgrades, continued building of our organization. It is also a break, for all of us everything slows down. One of our writers is getting married, another is going to travel the world, even I get to take a break from the sometimes monotonous article reviews, summer at 10:31 is about taking a break.
Often times those caught in the Messiah Trap have a hard time taking a break, they become so wrapped up in what they are doing for others that they do not have time for themselves. Often leaders living in the Messiah Trap will feel guilty taking a break, in fact if Burn-Out Cycles continue then it will become harder and harder to take a break. We get so caught up in helping others that we never actually take a break.
When 10:31 was interviewing for an administrative assistant when we first formed the leadership team in 2011 we interviewed a girl we thought had potential. We decided we could work with her, over the course of two or three months we discovered that she was not teachable, she was involved in way too much between school and various other activities she could not slow down.
Often times those who have had a traumatic experience have a hard time slowing down. They use the numerous activities to keep their minds off of the thoughts that often accompany recovering from a traumatic experience or experiences. For those who did not go through some sort of trauma it is a learned behavior, probably picked up through parents who encouraged service over healthy personal growth and development.
It is possible to take breaks in ministry. You may want to even set boundaries for yourself and for your ministry team. For example, one of the requirements at 10:31 is that you cannot hold a leadership position in any more than one ministry. But we want you involved in up to three ministries if it is possible. So if you are an AWANA leader you cannot be leading anywhere, you can be involved, but to lead in another ministry is discouraged unless you have sat down with leadership and looked at your schedule.
We do not do this to be controlling or legalistic, but because it allows our leaders and future leaders to learn to set boundaries. Setting boundaries and developing good time-management skills are essential to succeeding in both business and especially in ministry. When we develop good time management skills we learn how to better manage our lives and are better equipped to speak life into others.
So join us as we take a three month break, enjoy the rest of the teams articles (especially the final installation of Sticks & Stones) and work to apply some good time management skills to your life. It may require saying no, it may require you to take a vacation. That is nothing to feel guilty about, in God’s eyes each man and woman is as important as the next, and your spiritual growth and development is essential to the growth and upbringing of the next generation of leaders.
Stop the cycles that lead to burn out, stand up and Take the Lead.