Pastors don’t do a very good job of taking care of their bodies or their souls. Pastors are so busy doing the tasks of ministry that they often neglect themselves. Pastors go from meeting to meeting, often the meetings involve food and not healthy food. Pastors work hard, often don’t set good boundaries, and don’t get enough sleep or exercise. They do good spiritual work for others, preach, teach, counsel, visit, and pray, but have little or no time left to nurture their own spiritual life.
This was my life. Before coming to Fuller, I pastored a church for 24 years. I didn’t eat well, sleep enough, or exercise well. I worked too hard, and didn’t take enough time for my family or myself. I spent a lot of time in Scripture, but usually in preparation for the next class or service. I didn’t do a very good job of taking care of my body or my soul.
A minor health crisis woke me up. I am now doing a much better job of taking care of my body and my soul. I have now become an advocate for clergy health.
The Lowell Berry Center for Lifelong Learning at Fuller Theological Seminary is developing a 52 week program for Clergy Health. Each week The Burner Blog will be posting an article that will help you to get and stay healthier. There is no magic formula here, just an opportunity to be more attentive to your own life. Along the way, we hope you will develop a new mindset and some new habits.
We minister out of who we are—body and soul. It is good and right to pay attention and to make some changes for the better. This 52 week set of posts will launch in March 2012 at The Burner, the Fuller Theological Seminary, Berry Center for Lifelong Learning church and pastor resource website. You and your colleagues can begin at any point in the 52 weeks. The program will begin again at the end of the 52 weeks.
Join us in a journey towards health. Gather some others around you who will hold you accountable. Attend to your body and your soul. You will be amazed at the difference it makes!
To health! To life!