Monday, April 8, 2013

The toughest Monday of the Year:

Mondays in ministry can be tough.  You run the Sunday morning message over again in your mind, mentally catching mistakes you made or thinking of a great point that you should have brought out, but you didn't think of at the time.  You think of the people you touched and the responses you sensed from people who you can tell are hurting in life, and sometimes you simply know the morning message was good, but it wasn't the cure-all you hoped it would before them. And you realize that Sunday's coming again in 6 days...

I used to think that the toughest Monday of the year was the Monday after Easter.
The Monday immediately after Easter this year, I was wore out.
Exhausted.  Wiped out!
Being so tired, felt great -- the type of fatigue in ministry where you have a great sense of accomplishment.

It's that next Sunday, the Sunday one week after Easter though, where you have to be careful with your feelings.  As a minister, you can kind of look around and "see" who came back.  It would be tempting to be discouraged, because the correlation between extra visitors and your sense of identity in ministry can often be closely connected.  And then, the Monday after that following week hits you -- and you run the Sunday after Easter through your mind...

And remembering that Sunday following the week of Easter  -- I remember it's a good thing I'm not doing this all on my own.  I start to remember all of the help I had from other people we worship with in church, those who made Easter great.  And I think about my family's involvement in making Easter great.  And I think to the excitement people in church shared... And you ask, was God honored, because that seems to be all that really counts in the long run.  And if we got that right, everything else will fall into place.

Daily, I utilize Evernote on my Iphone.  I catch all my thoughts I want to store.  I have all kinds of folders, some for future sermons, thoughts on projects we are working on at church, blog ideas, article ideas for Wineskins, class ideas, ideas for my newspaper column, books I'm working on.  And then, I keep a great "to do list" in Evernote.  Mondays, sometimes I open my "to do list" and wonder, how will I get everything done? More importantly, on the Monday one week after Easter, I reflect on the question, are these areas in my "to do list" the best use of my time & energy?

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