It’s important that we stop from time to time and take a sober look at the that of our life and ministry. Scripture says to be “sober minded” and that requires a regular honest evaluation of or current state of affairs. The following is not an exhaustive list but will give you a good idea, if you’re honest, as to whether or not there’s strategic balance in place. This is essential for avoiding burnout, compassion fatigue, or avoiding a train wreck. Take a few moments to ask yourself these questions but first ask God to reveal to us our blind spots…
by your Spirit tell us what we need to hear,
and show us what we ought to do,
to obey Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.
How do you feel about the way you handle anger?
How do you feel when anger is directed at you?
What strategies or behaviors help you cope with anger?
How do you understand the concept of codependence?
With whom do you have a codependent relationship?
How do these relationships affect your ministry?
What strategies will you use to avoid codependence in the future?
What people or things have you been committed to in the past?
What are you committed to now?
How important is the commitment of family and friends to your life and ministry?
How will you support these commitments while serving in ministry?
How do you recognize that you’re depressed?
How do you respond when you recognize you are depressed?
What strategies or behaviors help you avoid becoming depressed?
What strategies or behaviors help you get over being depressed?
How do you cope with dangerous emotions, such as loneliness, anger, and feelings of deprivation?
What strategies and techniques help you maintain an emotional balance?
When you entered ministry, what aspects of it were you afraid of?
Have your fears about ministry changed since you entered?
What has helped you move past your fear?
Before you entered ministry, what were your friendships based on?
Now, what qualities do you look for in a friend?
Are they based on how they can support your ministry goals? Is this good or bad?
What plans do you have for making new, supportive friends and maintaining current friendships?
How have your fun and relaxing activities changed since you’ve been in ministry?
What do you do now to have fun and relax?
With whom do you have fun?
What role does having fun play in staying balanced in your ministry?
How will you incorporate new activities and hobbies into your life?
What experience have you had with grief?
How do you cope with feelings of grief now?
To whom do you turn when you experience grief?
Since you’ve been in ministry, when have you been the most happy?
What made you happy?
Are free time and being alone difficult for you?
Do you have a sense of feeling isolated since entering ministry?
In what ways is your drive to connect with kids driven by a fear of loneliness?
What activities can you pursue, outside of ministry, which will help you avoid isolation?
Has your motivation for impacting young people changed since you’ve been in ministry?
What has been your biggest challenge so far?
Do you have a support network to help you through the hard times?
As you move forward in your ministry, what are the most important aspects for you to focus on?
What contributes to you feeling overwhelmed?
How risk does feeling overwhelmed pose to your ministry?
What can you do to ensure that you do not feel overwhelmed?
These would be great questions to talk over with your staff/team/volunteers. We don’t pay enough attention to the well being of those we depend on to make our ministries successful. Spend some time asking others these questions and in essence you’ll be saying, “I care about you and your well being.”
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