Nothing hurts a church more than when its leaders burnout. Burnout is difficult for everyone and it often leads to a perpetuating cycle where new leaders are continually thrown into the fire of ministry only to end up burnt out. Here are three red flags along the way to spiritual burnout.
1. A lack of conviction
Do you know what drives you? Do you know why you do the things that you do? We need to have conviction and clarity about our mission if we are to avoid the road to burnout. Burnout begins when the "how" of ministry becomes more important than the "why."
2. A lack of support
Spiritually burnt out leaders are often found in isolation which is why leaders need to be rooted in a supportive community. A community that will encourage them through the tough times, accept them in their weaknesses, and be supportive and understanding if they need to step back from ministry.
3. Unrealistic expectations
A ministry cannot stand on anyone except Jesus. Let your spiritual leaders guide you, not save you.
Endurance is essential to being a follower of Christ. Salvation is a one time event, but to be a Christian is a continual process that requires endurance. So how are we to endure in our walk with God?
1. We endure when our mission is clear.
In the broadest strokes, our mission is to live out the Great Commission (Matt. 28:19) and the Great Commandment (Matt. 22:37-40). Make disciples. Love God. Love your neighbor as yourself. In the everyday, we must continually filter our thoughts and actions through these ideas. Are we loving God? Are we loving our neighbors? Are we making disciples?
2. We endure by digging deep into the Word of God and rooting ourselves in community.
It is essential for all followers of God to be investing in communities that are centered on the Word of God (Acts 2:42). When the hard times come, I have witnessed time and time again how God uses these communities as His hands of comfort, compassion, and provision. Are you spending time in the Word? Are you investing in a community centered on the Gospel?
3. We endure by fixing our eyes on our eternal hope.
When we keep our eyes on Jesus, we won't become overwhelmed by the problems we face in our walk with God (Heb. 12:1-2). It won't always be easy or comfortable, but knowing the end helps us walk through the present. We must shed our spiritual fat, the things that are weighing us down. What are the things weighing you down? Lay down your sins, burdens, apathy, and unbelief. Instead, pick up the yoke of Christ and endure.