As Ministers of Word and Sacrament, Elders, and Deacons, self-care is essential to move a church in a wilderness where we feel lost, discouraged, and weary as children of God. Covid continues to provide a spiritual dryness in the life of the church, or another term I recall using during my time as a hospital chaplain, spiritual dehydration. I would share with the medical staff about their spiritual dehydration in their job performance when they found themselves in a state of feeling depleted or empty. Being Spiritually dehydrated affects not only our spiritual lives, but also our thoughts to enhance the Christian Ministry, and our ability to serve faithfully because of our emotions of anxiety; anger, loneliness; jealousy; pride; and behaviors that seek positive self-care and development for improvement in our work. As a Chaplain, I would remind the medical staff, as we examine patients’ physical symptoms, watch out for the symptoms and spiritual elements which may sometimes be lacking in our professional calling.
As we plan for this church season, there is excitement and passion for our service to God, but as we look at our calendars filled with appointments, often life starts to wane. Yes, we are in September after supposedly an energetic and relaxed summer vacation, but now many of us feel confused, lost, weary, and sometimes burned out. Maybe you have lost hope and slipped into depression or anxiety. God might feel distant and quiet. Maybe you are battling spiritual warfare with a family crisis or church loss, I encourage you to “Listen to Your Heart” and seek Self-care for the furtherance of your calling in this great Christian Ministry and Mission of the Heart. One of my favorite songs of praise, when I go through a wilderness experience, I start singing the old traditional hymn, ” Cast All Your Cares unto the Lord” by Gary Oliver.
Continue to seek care for your Spirit and Health.
Rev. Dr. Micheal Edwards, Executive Minister