Home Podcast Steve Cuss: The Anxiety That Is Unique to Church Leaders

Steve Cuss: The Anxiety That Is Unique to Church Leaders

“I believe, theologically, anxiety is actually a spiritual dark force. I believe that when we’re chronically anxious, we don’t sense that God is with us. We believe the lie that it’s all on my shoulders.”

“Anxiety is this giant tangled web, but if you can learn the sources of anxiety and then you can diagnose what’s going on, you will immediately become less anxious.”

“Pastors fundamentally relate to God more as God’s employee than God’s child, and I think that is the problem. And then the success pressure becomes the symptom of that problem.”

“We’re clocking in for the boss more than we’re experiencing being a kid in the kingdom.”

“I think the way to detangle anxiety is to get a friend you trust, or sometimes you have to get a therapist, you know, a professional, and to say to that friend, ‘Hey I’m really anxious. I’m going to tell you what’s going on and I’m going to ask you to prayerfully listen to the assumptions that I’m making that aren’t true.’”

“I think a lot of what makes a leader anxious is that we believe things that simply aren’t true.” 

“I try to be hyper aware of when I’ve forgotten that God is with me.”

“What has been most freeing for me is to not [merely] remember that God is with me, but to remember that God is actually ahead of me and whatever situation I’m about to walk into that I’m anxious about…God is already there.” 

“The best gift that a leader can offer another person or a church or a group is their own non-anxious presence.”

“A leader can learn over time to pay attention to processes as much as they’re paying attention to content…every group of people end up in recurring predictable patterns.” 

“You can change patterns by confessing your own complicity in them.”

“Emotional health and spiritual health take a lot of time. I personally have found that ministry is hazardous to emotional and spiritual health, so I think the average pastor needs to put more time into it than people who aren’t in ministry.” 

Mentioned in the Show by Steve Cuss

Managing Leadership Anxiety podcast
Managing Leadership Anxiety: Yours and Theirs
Managing Leadership Anxiety Conference, March 2020
Peter Scazzerro
Steve’s Twitter profile
Steve’s website
Trisha Taylor

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As Vice President of Ministry Mobilization for Outreach, Inc., Jason dedicates his time to encouraging and equipping churches, denominations and ministry organizations to develop their Kingdom effectiveness by creating a culture that is both incarnational and invitational. He also serves as the Executive Director of the National Back to Church Sunday movement and hosts the weekly ChurchLeaders podcast. Jason lives on Anastasia Island, Florida, with his beautiful wife and children. Connect with him on Twitter and Instagram @jasondaye