As I think about my upcoming Sabbatical, I am filled with gratitude as well as anxiety.
Questions fill my mind,
"What will I do?"
"Will the church be ok?"
"Will this person, these projects, those issues be handled well?"
It's ironic, isn't it?
We preachers invite people into God's rest by inviting them to repent and realign their lives to Christ and His Ways. We, pastors, offer rest from a life that may lead to vainglory and strife, we ask that our members trust us to lead them into green pastures where the Great Shepherd will feed, nourish, and give them rest. But we often fail to be led, to be fed, to embrace rest.
I believe Pastor AJ explained the real reasons why we pastors don't rest well.
“I think the reason we don't Sabbath is ultimately this. And I'm speaking to pastors and missionaries. I think at the end of the day, we don't trust God.
When you think about Moses going up on a mountain and receiving the ten commandments… that story is exactly why we don't Sabbath.
Moses goes up on top of the mountain and he receives the law and comes down. And immediately when he comes down, what is everybody doing? They're worshipping a golden calf.
That's why you don't Sabbath.
Because you're afraid what will happen if you turn your phone off… In fact, going up on the mountain for Moses was a lose-lose scenario, wasn't it?
Because if he goes up on a mountain and comes back down, everybody is worshipping a golden calf, he's a bad leader.
But if he goes up and comes back down and everybody is worshipping God, he's unnecessary…
Sabbath is our weekly reminder that you're not the Lord…
To take a break and stop is to scream that Jesus Christ is Lord." - AJ Swoboda
- Pastors, join me in the resistance by resting.
- Make a firm decision to be a leader who trusts God.
- Confess and embrace the possibility that you may not be the "best" leader out there and that it's ok to have limitations. That if your people do end up worshipping a golden calf while you're gone it doesn't mean God isn't in control, it just means they are human full of fear and anxiety... just like you.
- Celebrate the fact that your church doesn't ultimately belong to you, it belongs to Jesus, the Great Shepherd.
- Embrace the reality that you may not be as necessary as you'd like and be grateful that He chose you anyway and that He intends to work through you still and more.
- And as Pastor AJ said, remind yourself that you're not the Lord by resting and resisting the temptation to be all things to all (your) people.
So, take a break and stop. (For some of you, you may need a Sabbatical yourself!)
And in so doing, you will shout to the world and your congregation that Jesus Christ is Lord.
- Pastors: Take a break from all your pastoring duties today for about 5 minutes and watch this video below. You can thank me later. :)
- Ekko members: All Sabbatical (official) News and Posts will be posted directly to our private Facebook page. If you're a member and are not on that private page, please email us at email@example.com. Post #1 has already been posted on there so check it out! :)