Peter Drucker once said, “You can not do a a good job, if a job is all you do.” This hit me like a ton of bricks when I was looking for good leadership quotes to include in my weekly Sidekick Scoop email. Why? Because I see this happening regularly not just in my life but in the lives of so many other ministers as well. We work and work and work all the time. While having good work ethic is good and necessary, we are more than just our job. Yet, we continue to place so much emphasis on doing, that we neglect to take care of other things in our lives that can help us have a lasting ministry.
If you want to have a lasting ministry, you have to be more about your job. You have to take care of yourself which means you have to invest in certain areas of your life OUTSIDE of ministry. I believe that if you invest in these 3 areas, you will have a lasting ministry that leaves a huge legacy well past your time here on earth.
Here are 3 investments you can make to have a lasting ministry.
Invest in yourself. This is not where you invest in yourself by going to more conferences or reading more books about your ministry. This is an investment in who you are and who you want to become as a person. This is where you read books for fun (if you enjoy that) or go to movies that you enjoy watching or simply do things you like doing.
But this also means investing in your health. Ministers don’t have always the best habits of eating healthy and exercising regularly unfortunately. Because of this and the stresses of ministry, it is so important to invest in your health. Get a smartwatch or fitness watch, start watching what you eat and really seek to include exercise and healthy habits into your life. The better you take care of yourself and your body the longer you will have in ministry.
Invest in your family and friends. Our ministry jobs can become time consuming and life consuming. It is easy to get sucked into things 24/7. And while they are all good things, there needs to be a time for you to stop and invest in your family and friends.
When you invest in your family and friends you take that necessary time away from ministry and simply enjoy those closest to you. Have a cookout, go to the swimming pool or the park with your kids, have a nice date night with your spouse, do housework that needs to get done, attend kids activties (and watch, don’t be on your phone doing work), watch a movie or a sporting event, be apart of a community event, or countless other things you enjoy doing with your family and friends.
I have been doing full-time vocational ministry for over 20 years now and I have been apart of multiple churches and ministries. The reality is that ministries will come and go but your family and friends will be with you hopefully the rest of your life. Are you making real investments in your family? The more you do that, the longer your potential gets for a lasting ministry.
Invest in others. When you are doing ministry you are always investing in others. However, this is similar yet different as well. Are you investing people OUTSIDE your ministry? Or are you so laser focused on your ministry that you can think about making investments in your neighbor, friend, cashier at the local grocery story or even mail man? There are so many investments you can be making in those in your community. Are you seeing them or are you too busy focused on your “ministry”?
Any follower of Christ should be investing in those around them whether they are in ministry or not. If you choose to see the opportunities of those around you, you can have a lasting ministry that supersedes any ministry you are doing in your local Church or mission organization. How is that possible? It possible because, as I mentioned above, your “ministry” will come and go depending on your job situation but making investments in your community can last well beyond a job. It can create some real unique opportunities that will expand your reach and help you make a lasting impact for years to come.
Being passionate about your ministry and Church is great and important. No one wants to work somewhere where they are not excited to be at daily. However, if you invest all your time into your job and put little to no investment in yourself, your family and friends or others outside of your ministry, you will find yourself with a potentially broken self and family life.
Choose today to make investments in those areas in your life and see what great stuff God does with your life that helps you have a lasting impact well beyond your years in any one particular Church or ministry “job”.
What areas in your life have you invested in that have helped you in your ministry that doesn’t pertain to your “job”? Share it below or on social media using #ymsidekick when you share so we can all be encouraged and inspired.