First things first…Love God, Love People.

1 09 2010

I’m currently reading through Mad Church Disease by Anne Jackson.  Although I am not struggling with burnout, it is helpful for everyone to read who is working in ministry because it does deal with the difficulties associated with burnout and the symptoms that can lead toward it.  This is a good book (not great book) in dealing with this area.  The helpful thing she has is that she provides check-ups along the way which help the reader to evaluate where they are at or could be in relationship to ministry burnout.

Just to clarify, the burnout she is referring to concerns the overworking, stressful burnout.  She is not referring to the disappointment found in people burnout.

She quotes the Gospel of Mark when Jesus is asked about the greatest commandment.  She adds some of her own commentary by stating,

It doesn’t say, “The greatest commandment is to love your job with all your herat, soul, mind, and strength.”  It doesn’t say, “The greatest commandment is to love your calling with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.”  It doesn’t even say, “Love the church with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.”  The greatest commandment.  Love the Lord your God.  With all your heart.  With all your soul.  With all your mind.  With all your strength.  And next?  Love your neighbor as yourself. (110-111, emphasis hers)

Of course this is not profound, but it is an excellent reminder.  As much as we are to love our job, calling, and church, we are first and foremost (and truly only) commanded to love God and neighbor.  That is our life job description.

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