One of the questions often asked of me is, “How in the world do you stay so passionate? It seems like you believe every Sunday is going to be the ‘best ever!’” Great question…recently, I sat down and listed out a few things that I have worked into my life over the past 20 years that constantly increase my passion levels.
1. My Personal Time with God
Nothing…and I mean NOTHING fires me up more than my time with the Lord. I am a firm believer that if God is going to light a church on fire that He is will do it through a leader who is on fire…and we can’t be on fire if we’re not drawing close to Him on a daily basis.
It is a sad fact that some church leaders do not make their personal time with God as a priority…and if this happens, it will become evident. AND…let me make sure to emphasize this…this is NOT my sermon prep time…this is a time where I ask the Lord to speak to me, to convict me, to challenge me, and lead me in the ways I need to go.
The people you surround yourself with will either add to or take away from your passion. Personally…I can’t really handle people in meetings who are not fired up about being there. A person who lacks passion will always bring the temperature in the room DOWN; however, passionate people will always find a way to work though problems and find solutions that advance God’s Kingdom. Passionate people do whatever it takes…and those kinds of people fire me up!
God did not design us to go 900 miles per hour with our hair on fire 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. (AND…church leader, rest never “just happens,” if you don’t schedule time to rest…you won’t rest!) It’s a joke around the office that whenever I come back from a break that I am sort of like a tornado…and it’s somewhat true because taking time to rest ALWAYS refuels me!
4. Working Out Physically
The healthier I have gotten physically, the more my passion levels have increased. Physical health isn’t talked about that often among Christian circles…but it should be! Trust me, church leader…your passion levels can and will be higher when your body isn’t ticked at you all of the time for the way you are treating it!
John Maxwell once said, “If you always do what you’ve always done then you’ll always get what you’ve always got!” AND…we’ve all also heard that “insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting to get different results!” So…if I find myself in a rut…I make some changes. It may be a change in an environment, change in my routine, or even a change in a way I schedule a meeting.
6. Not Becoming Obsessed with What People Who Don’t Know Me Think About Me
When pastors and church leaders begin to live for the approval of an online audience…it’s over! Pastors, I’ve said it before, and I will say it again…you cannot allow those who know you the least to define you the most.
Understand that…He loves the church more than I do! That He has the world in His hands. That He called me, is with me, and will sustain me through whatever I go through. That He was at work long before I got here and will still be working long after I am gone. That He has greater plans for this ministry than I do! That HIS power is so much greater than my performance! It’s on HIM…not me!!!