Time to Minister

I am trying to get back on track. With moving and various viruses hitting our household, I am completely off my rhythm and feeling rootless and frustrated. It’s not that things are terrible. Actually, the new house is wonderful and I’m getting in some great time with the kids. Instead, it’s that everything is in a new place, and I have to think so much to find or do anything.

And because my focus has been so much on moving and my family, I feel terribly disconnected from work. There are calls I should have made and people I should have checked in with. I’m feeling overwhelmed and I need to steel myself and jump in to the tasks that are begging to be done. I know I can handle it. One or two days of good, hard work would undoubtedly get me back on track.

I need to do it, for my own good as well as for the good of the congregation full of amazing people I love. Yet something in me resists. I want some “me” time. I want to walk around in my house alone, enjoying the beauty and newness of it. I want to spend an hour staring at the fire and the “seasonal evergreen” beside it. I want to read good stories. I want to sleep in.

I feel guilty for these desires. In part because I know that I have always been prone to sloth, even though it isn’t good for me. When I give in to it, I end up depressed and miserable. But I feel guilty even more because I love my congregation and I love my calling. I know I’m at my best when I am serving the congregation and not indulging myself. But it is hard work and somehow, I don’t feel up to it tonight.

So, if I have been slow in responding to you, though your need is real, I am sorry. If I have let a deadline pass or a forgotten a meeting, I am sorry. If I have been absent when my presence was all you required, I’m sorry. If I have been short-tempered or impatient, I’m sorry. I am truly trying to do my best. My best is just kind of mediocre right now. I am trying to balance more than I know how to hold. I will continue trying and I’m sure I’ll figure it out soon. Please bear with me as I learn.

I am excited about preaching again on Sunday. I’ve discovered that preparing and presenting services is a spiritual practice for me. It keeps me connected to the congregation and to my own deeper self. It reminds me of all I’ve been given. I still can’t believe that people come to hear me. It is a gift and a privilege. Very few people have a group of people really listen to them each week. Even fewer have congregations like mine, that listen with love and open-heartedness. They are rarely critical. In fact, I rarely hear anything but constructive comments and helpful feedback. Even my biggest critic in the congregation recently told me, “That was one of the best sermons you’ve ever preached.”

I am lucky. I am loved. I am heard. I am held in care and concern. I am one of those to whom much has been given. It is time for me to get back on track and serve the people again. And I need to do it well.

May it be so.

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3 thoughts on “Time to Minister

  1. You DO deserve some “me” time. Make sure you schedule some into every day. Your advent sermon said to make sure we get some silence every day, even if it’s only five minutes. It has been really helpful to me.

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