Pastor, You need a Sabbatical!

Advise to Pastors: You need a sabbatical!

Every pastor at some stage must take a sabbatical, I am not talking about a holiday at the beach, I am talking about stepping away from the pulpit to regain perspective, balance and renewed insight.

If the world understands you must take a break. If the sports world know there is a need for half time, if the work environment has a tea break and a lunch break, why do Pastors believe God called them and didn’t accommodate a break ( sabbatical).

God rested on the 7th day, Jesus often withdrew from the crowds. Why do you feel you must be there 24/7/365 as if you have more resource and sense than Elohim?

I deal with pastors all the time trust me I can see in many of their eyes despair, doubt, the edge of giving-up and the fear of failure.

I see their wrestling with what was interpreted as promised by God and what was physically realized, the simmering dialectical tension ever so pervasive.

This is no prophecy, it’s common sense, God wants you to take a break. If the church you pastor collapse because you stepped aside it was your church not God’s because he sustains whatever he started.

When ever have you taken a sabbatical, I am not talking about getting on to a plane to go overseas to attend a Conference of your favorite preacher or your bishop you submit to whom you see a few days a year, take a few pictures with and assume you very tight.

Research is showing an increasing number of preachers and pastors don’t believe anymore and go through the mechanical process of a humanist world as drifters. Many more have lost the respect of their families because they simply are not breadwinners.

A bigger group of pastors children simply don’t want to hear about church and church people because they have been so hurt by people that made their parents suffer.

To crown it all the pressures of a capitalistic and greed based system fueled by TV ministry in which a handful appear phenomenally successful and claim they on their way to billionaire stature as juxtaposed to those who don’t even know from where the next meal will come is a stress factor that has bearing on the physical, mental and spiritual lives of pastors.

Pastors end up living lives of deceit pretending to have it all together when the bottom gave way a long time ago.

To add insult to injury the behaviour and worship of hedonistic pleasure by some who have violated the moral code of being called does not help pastors either. The recent foolishness and outright crime around pastors places enormous pressure on those who seek to walk right.

You are running on empty Sir, you know you going through the motions and the Sunday getting up is long no more enjoyable. Is it not time you go on a sabbatical ?

I am talking about a Sabbatical. A time to pensively and calmly reflect, a time to rekindle your first love, a time to forgive yourself for thinking you are superman. A time free from the fallacies of the trend of conferences and convocations, programmes and initiatives. A break from your billboard presence of  a crafted “perfect” picture of you and your spouse neatly choreographed.

A Sabbatical is an openness to let God reveal to you the full extent of your ministry as not narrowly based on four walls that defines for most the totality of church, but a universe He created and you live in and always will have to work, play and relaxing to do.

Discover new dimensions of you learn to write, do some art, play in the sand, find a place of solitude, read more than what you deem your spiritual favorite authors and have fun! Break with the idea of worshipping ordinary human beings who have found their rhythm in life.

It’s a time to cry at your so-called successes and laugh at your so-called failures

You running on empty and crashing is very possible – you need to consider a Sabbatical – I truly am finding mine refreshing

Bishop CNSR


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