Hi Ladies! Have you ever been stressed out, depressed and ready to quit? I know I have, and when I find myself feeling this way, I know I need to physically rest and drink from Jesus’ well. In this session, we’re going to look at how to balance ministry, work, and relationships so you can run the race. Let’s dig in to see how life-giving leaders drink from the living water.
Are you constantly running here and there? We weren’t created for constant activity and never-ending noise. We need to practice silence and stillness. But in order to do this, we have to manage our time, create margin in our schedule, and intentionally find balance in our lives. I firmly believe that we cannot run the race that we are called to run if we are overworked, out of balance, with no margin in our lives.
When we are exhausted, our emotional defenses are weakened. In this state, people will turn to comfort foods, becoming overweight putting their health at risk. How many times do we hear of a church leader having an emotional or physical affair because he or she didn’t have time to invest in his or her marriage, became exhausted and fell into sin? Here are a few ideas that will help you on your journey to a balanced, healthier life.
-Take a Sabbath. Make it non-negotiable. Unplug from social media and emails so you can plug into rest. Schedule margin into your calendar. I know many women with full calendars that schedule exercise, devotional time, and date night.
-Drink from the living water by practicing the essentials: worship, Bible reading, prayer, fasting, meditating on Scripture.
– Practice just being. I know that sounds weird, but if you can master just being – being okay with inactivity. The attention is split throughout the day between family, work, and social media. We are inundated with noise and activity. In our stress-filled lives, we need to create time to rest our minds. We need to create head space. For example, try sitting on a park bench and take in the beauty around you. Take a walk, not for the sake of exercise, but just for the sheer joy of being outside, and resist the urge to Instagram your surroundings!
– Practice thinking about those things that are worthy of your mental real estate. Philippians 4:8 reminds us to, “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” (NLT)
-Try deep breathing throughout your work day. Sit in your chair with your feet uncrossed. Relax your shoulders. Shut your eyes so that you’re not distracted. When you begin breathing, make yourself aware of your breath going in and out of your mouth and how your lungs fill up and release. If you start thinking about your to-do list, then refocus. When you are deep breathing, shut your eyes and focus on something that brings you joy. I have a special spot in Hilton Head that I think about. It is a bench beside a gorgeous lake. I picture myself sitting on the bench, looking at the water. I remember the way the sun hits the trees around the lake. It is beautiful and I have great memories of family vacations at Hilton Head. The Father gave us imaginations, so how wonderful for us to use our imaginations to calm ourselves, slow our heart rates, breath…just be.
-Music is powerful. It can spur deep emotional reactions in a person. Political and social movements have been driven by music. However, it can also be a great relaxer. In the midst of my work day, I will often plug my earbuds into my phone and listen to soothing music.
Questions: On a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best, how would you rate yourself on your ability to be still and listen to your internal world? If your number is low, why is it low? What can you do to make progress in this area of your life? When was the last time you took a walk just for pleasure?
Prayer: Father, help me to be still and listen to You. Help me to rest. Refresh me spiritually, emotionally and physically. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
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