Friday, February 7, 2014

The Truth About Burnout

I was recently invited to write about burnout for K! Magazine/KidzMatters; so since they
posted the article on the KidzMatters site, I thought I'd share part of it with you and provide the link for the full post.

"I do not believe burnout is really a problem in children’s ministry. Stay with me for a minute as I explain. When we, or a volunteer, are tired from serving, instead of identifying it as, 'we are tired', we call it burn-out. Or, when one of us experiences frustration because we are serving on our own or took too much on for us to be able to handle, instead identifying it as we are doing too much on our own, we call it burnout.

There are other examples, but the point is, burnout is not really the problem. Misidentifying, or even not identifying, the problem is the problem. When we fail to correctly identify the problem, we can’t solve the problem and sadly, the end result is, people leave ministry and do not experience the joy God has for them when they serve. This is a true tragedy.

God, in His amazing generosity, has given each of us gifts to use in our service to Him! He doesn’t give these gifts for them to be a burden to us. He doesn’t give these gifts for them to bring us stress or frustration. Quite the contrary. When we identify and use the gifts God has given us, in addition to receiving the awesome gifts, we also receive a most amazing bonus . . . we receive an incredible joy!

Clearly, Satan doesn’t want us, or the volunteers in our ministries, to use these gifts and most definitely does not want any of us to experience the joy God has for us. So, if he can sidetrack us into believing we are burned out, he can not only get us to quit using the gifts, but he is able to successfully rob us of joy.
So, we need to first of all correctly identify what we are experiencing if we think we are burned out and are contemplating quitting. Once we correctly identify what the problem actually is, then we can find a solution. Hopefully, it will be a solution which allows us to continue to serve and frees us to experience the joy God has for us! Then, we need to focus on things which are true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, of good repute, excellent and worthy of praise. Doing these things enables us to stand firm in God and rejoice . . . which is absolutely something worth rejoicing about!
For example, if we’re feeling overwhelmed with all we have to do, find help! Delegate. I firmly believe God cares more than anyone if we have the people we need to do all the things we need to do in our children’s ministries. The people you need are there in your church! Some recognize they are these people. These are the volunteers you have! And some don’t know they are these people yet; these are the treasures waiting for you to discover them!
If a volunteer feels alone, overloaded, or unprepared, then get them help and training. Do not understaff your classes. Not only is this a safety risk, but it leads to volunteers feeling overwhelmed and quitting. Try to refocus away from the negative and onto the reason you’re serving and the difference you’re making. Do everything you can to free yourself and your volunteers so you can serve and experience the joy. How do you do this? Consider the following . . . "
Please follow this link for the rest of this article where you'll find five steps to freeing yourself and your volunteers so you all can experience the joy of serving as well as a prayer for you and your volunteers.
Remember; as I say, "It really is a battle for our minds and hearts. If we believe we’re overwhelmed, overworked, taken for granted … burned out, we’ll act accordingly and quit. We won’t have God’s joy. If, however; we think about things which are true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, of good repute, excellent and worthy of praise, we will stand firmly in God’s peace and joy! . . . Focus on the joy and burn out, will burn out!"

1 comment:

  1. YOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW TIMELY THIS ARTICLE WAS! Thank you so much for listening the leading of the Father!