There are two great dangers in the life of a church leader. Leading from your own power and assuming it’s all up to God’s power. One leader tends to over-do and under pray. The other tends to over-think and under-do.
We all have a natural bent or bias toward one side or the other. For some the emphasis is slight for others it’s significant. The farther toward an extreme the greater the danger.
The great caution is that they are both exhausting and can be very stressful.
- Doing too much (usually in over-drive, overachieving)
- Doing too little (often behind, under accomplishing)
Eugene Peterson in his book The Contemplative Pastor quotes John Orman who named the twin perils of ministry, “Flurry and Worry,” because flurry dissipates energy and worry constipates it.
- Flurry – always on the go, little time for thought, strategy, or deep conversation
- Worry – Overthinking, procrastination, and hesitancy in decision-making
Which one is more you? (even a little)
Either way, your soul becomes stressed and even weary.
The evidence of leading in sustained weariness and stress is clear – here are several common examples:
- Irritable in relationships
- Lack of clarity in thought
When you lead out of balance, the Holy Spirit’s influence within you decreases because you’re focused on trying to find your way rather than allowing the Holy Spirit lead the way.
It is the presence and power of the Holy Spirit that helps us experience a balance of the work God wants us to do and the part we can’t do on our own.
Jesus made it clear: “I am the vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)
Strong words indeed.
And Jesus also said: “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” (John 20:21-22)