Yesterday's "verse of the day", courtesy of YouVersion Bible app, was Matthew 20:28.
"Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life as a ransom for many."
First, it's incredible, what Christ accomplished on the Cross, as we fast approached the weekend that we celebrate His death and resurrection. There are many challenges for which, people will rise to the occasion and many more, which people will react, "not on your life", for they know it is simply an impossible task to take on with all that is within them. Yet Jesus stepped on to the world stage knowing that only He could do the impossible for humanity.
Secondly, as you know, the more I write these posts, the more things trigger the pastoral perspective. This verse was no different, for immediately I considered the times we read about Jesus stepping away. He had his times where He avoided the cross. We see Him moving away from the disciples to spend time in prayer. We see Him spend time in fellowship for no other purpose than fellowship. We see Him draw close to His inner circle; the few selected disciples who He hung out with the most.
Though His intent was not to receive ministry, I believe He understand He needed times of refreshing and rejuvenation. He understood the hardship and difficulty of ministry; for even though it formally lasted only a short three years, we see His struggle. We see the angels minister to Him after He was tempted of the devil. You can almost hear His conversation with God in the final days regarding the Cross.
"If there is any other way, Dad; please..."
Is it entirely possible that the human element of Jesus Christ was, at times, on the verge of burnout?
Certainly, He had moments of frustration in ministry, even with His disciples. "You couldn't stay awake and pray for even an hour?"
Needless to say, who knows what situation or circumstance will move a pastor one step closer to burnout. While they too, seek primarily to minister rather than receive it; if Christ understand the delicate balance of battling burnout, certainly pastors (of all positions) need take time to be refreshed and rejuvenated; both by the angels of God and the people of God and receive ministry for themselves.
Let us pray, this #associatePastorTuesday, for pastors struggling to find the balance in the battle of burnout. For those that are literally just steps away from burnout, pray God would strengthen their hearts and minds, even this very hour. For whatever concerns and burdens that are weighing them done, may they lay them at Jesus' feet, exchanging them for His light load. May God surround them with people and friends who will speak life into their circumstance and help bring comfort and wisdom to the matters on their mind. May the enemy not get the upper hand in his attempt to discourage, detour and derail their life, home and ministry. Pray a hedge of protection; that God would keep His hand upon them and revive them.
Stronger today than ever before
To continue to the work to which they've been called.
That all might hear and know
The goodness and grace of God
For the cause of Jesus Christ.
Just a man, attempting to fulfill God's plan. Husband, Dad, Dreamer. Blogger.