Rest Assured - by Keely Morley
One of the key lessons we must learn as leaders is to never undervalue rest. Work hard, give your all, be excellent in the workplace and in how you serve Jesus in church... and make sure you rest well. Too many, leaders in particular, do not value and guard rest. God has called you to this for a lifetime. He wants you to finish well. For that to be possible you need rest.
Here are four great tips to help you last the distance in ministry and leadership:
1. Book your rest in the diary a year in advance
The annual leave, the days off, the Sundays away. Book it. Plan it carefully so that it is spaced out and after key events (not before) so that you can go away without being concerned about big things looming on the horizon.
2. Keep to it!
No matter what. Life will always throw up reasons to cut your holiday short or delay it. There will always be issues that need dealing with or pastoral situations that need attention. This is why it is important to build team so that others can help carry the responsibilities.
It is important that you prioritise your rest - it is out of the overflow of your heart that everything springs. It is out of the health of your spirit in God that you serve others. You can't give what you didn't receive. Receiving requires time out. Keep it.
3. Turn off ALL gadgets.
If you can still read emails, answer texts, read Facebook status updates (and I guarantee you on rest times there will always be one that drives you crazy), then this is not rest. Turn everything off... or more radically... don't take them with you. If for any reason you must be contactable for immediate family members not with you then use great features like the ‘do not disturb’ functions now available on smartphones so that you will only receive calls from those selected as ‘favourites’. This will enable you to hear from children or elderly parents but still have complete rest.
4. Be careful what you plan.
DIY is not rest. Neither is preaching in someone else’s church (you still need time to prepare, pray and travel). Know what is restful for you and what is not – if spending time with lots of people drains you then don’t plan a group holiday where you are literally talking to others and socialising constantly. Be wise with how you spend your allocated rest times.
God created rest. The Sabbath principle originated from God. When you truly rest you create space for God to speak, to empower, to re-envision, to encourage and strengthen. You will be a stronger, healthier leader if you take care of yourself AS well as you take care of others. #rest