There have been many things I have learned during this semester of ministry residency. So many, in fact, that exhausting all of them individually would pollute this post; a brief summary will have to do for now. You can subscribe to my newsletter for updates exclusive to my residency by either filling out that pop up form you saw upon visiting my page, or by clicking here.
I have grown in my self-awareness substantially because I experienced a heavy season of exhaustion, depletion, and even desolation at points. The vast array of circumstances leading to feeling drained put me in a position where I was forced to either complacently whither and wallow, or take a step forward by letting go of all control I harbor in scenarios both good and the bad. This has left me in a position where I abandon my freedom to secure the outcome and rely on faith alone, which I seriously struggle with. I know this is nothing new because most, if not all religious people struggle with this to some degree or another, but admonishing this reality is never easy. It takes ownership of one’s self-awareness actually being self-knowledge, admitting fault to how they cultivate their spiritual growth in private. Though this conclusion is a hard pill to swallow, it tills the soil for flourishing as God intended for humanity. The balancing act I have tried cultivating I was running on empty and came to this realization when I realized my idea of flourishing was actually a self-centered idealistic pursuit for personal achievement, which was crafted for my comfort more than it was my wellness. Since then, I am aware of what is required in the realm of self-awareness, reflection, and processing; all of which are built on a cruciformity. Here are some of the specific areas I would like to highlight:
• Poor time management is the result of prioritizing the urgent over the important
• Exposing my garbage and failure doesn’t kill my pastoral credibility when done in an appropriate fashion. On the contrary, it makes me a better leader.
• Having a morning routine is essential to my wellness and discipline
• Just because ministry often feels like a competition doesn’t mean I should enable these notions
• Boundaries are needed. They demonstrate responsibility and should never be avoided
• There is nothing pompous or arrogant about acknowledging my gifts
• It is a disservice to the church, both local and global, when I withhold the gifts God gave to me serve others with
• I can provide pastoral care with consistency and authenticity, but if I don’t prioritize my own spiritual and emotional well-being the pastoral care will always be sub-par.
These are just a few of the many points I could list regarding this first semester of residency. I look forward to the upcoming semester and will keep you in the loop with anything new.
Israel in January 2019!
One of the components of my degree program is to take a 11 day trip to Israel. The Israel study tour happens every January, and Alex and I are saving up for the 2019. The total cost for the trip is just shy of $5600, which includes everything and is due by August 1st 2018. (flight, bags, hotels, on land travel, and three meals a day).
We have started saving already, and are brainstorming ideas to raise the funds so we can pay for the trip without getting into debt. Please pray for us as we begin this process! If you or anyone you know who would consider helping us financially, we would be extremely grateful! You can help us by clicking the button here, or sharing the link with others. Anything helps!
Side note: Thank you to Ginny and Kregel Academic for sending me the lovely coffee mug birthday gift shown in the picture above. I’ve enjoyed every book of theirs I’ve read; click the link to read my review of their publication The Spirituality of Paul. If you are a blogger looking add a few book reviews to your page, you should check out the Kregel Academic Blog Review Program! They’re quick to respond with excellent literature and cool coffee mugs that illuminate my morning coffee experience. Feel free to tell them I referred you