Ministry Today – Serving and empowering church leaders

Woman-quiet-time-silenceEaster is often the most difficult week of the year for pastors.

Not only do we have the stress of our congregation, but weird things seem to happen during that week. Family stress goes up, financial stresses skyrocket … and our time schedule is rigid because of the many activities. And then it is over.

Are you ready for a rest? It might be easy to go through the routine—do the post mortem on Easter week and then focus on what is next without taking time to let your body and soul catch up.

Instead, this week, let’s take control of the calendar and focus on silence. Silence is the spiritual discipline most often avoided in today’s society. We “need” noise to propel us forward. If we aren’t listening to news, watching a TV show or letting music calm us, we talk to ourselves … or anyone else who will listen.

Think about what the disciples were going through this week after Jesus died and rose again. They were going through a major paradigm shift. For them, meeting together was very helpful. Talking through the change helped them grasp it.

However, noise isn’t always the answer. John the Baptist’s father, Zechariah, was in for a paradigm shift, and God gave him a forced time of silence so that he could manage the transition (and believe God).

In silence, you hear your heart and God’s voice. You can sense the distance between the two, and if you let it, the silence will transform your view of how life should be—to God’s perspective.

Richard Foster tells us, “If we are constantly being swept off our feet with frantic activity, we will be unable to be attentive at the moment of inward silence.”

What can you let go of this week in order to develop an attitude and time of silence?

How can you help your church staff take some time to rest and hear God’s voice?

Kim Martinez is an ordained Assemblies of God pastor with a master of theology from Fuller Seminary. She is a ministry and life development coach and can be found online at www.deepimprints.com. She writes a weekly column for ministrytodaymag.com.

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