Being a pastor is really hard work. Sometimes pastors feel like they have the burdens of their entire congregation on their shoulders. Ask anyone who’s shepherded a church. Pastors are people too and some of the statistics tell a sad story.
- 71% claim they’re burned out and/or spiritually fatigued
- 1,500 pastors leave the ministry each month
- 50% will divorce their wives.
- 50% would leave the ministry today if they could find another way to earn money.
- 40% have an affair while in the ministry.
- 70% only study the scripture to prepare a sermon.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. Below are six tools to help combat pastoral burnout.
- Confess your faults. No one in their right mind thinks you’re perfect, so stop trying to act like it. Confess your faults, sins and weakness to someone you trust. Ask for prayer and expect healing and cleansing.
- Set limits. Jesus knows your limitations and doesn’t expect you to do it all. Carve out time in your day, week and month for yourself and your family.
- Share the load. Leaders raise up leaders. Train and empower people to care for each other. Ministry is a team sport.
- Spend time with Jesus. You entered the ministry because you loved Him; you’ll stay in the ministry because you love Him.
- Love your wife. The church will have other pastors, but only you can be her husband. Treat her well. Do for her what Jesus does for His bride.
- Love your kids. You’re their dad, so act like it. Kids are our spiritual and physical responsibility. Love them. Play with them. Spend time with them. Fatherhood is more important than 99 percent of your other responsibilities.
Are there other things you’d add to this list? Feel free to share in the comments below.