leaders need to get a hobby

This blog post has been rolling around my in head since the end of April. Time to write it down. 

One of my professors at school, Dr. Hess, spoke to our ministry formation group in April and talked about Practices of Play.

Pastoral self-sacrifice is a misread. Does every leader need to do? No. There’s a difference in dying to self vs. dying to our delight.

Why do so many pastors lose the light in their eyes as years in a church go on?

Are we looking for spontaneity and life where life wasn’t expected?

It’s our job to pay attention to our delight. What makes our heart sing?

Her suggested practices of play…

Get your head & body out of your primary environment for 1 hour each week


  1. Feed your inner artist

  2. Go to a bakery, walk in a park downtown, visit a toy shop, coffee shop

  3. Don’t work

  4. Do this by yourself

  5. Some call it a date with God

  6. Listen and receive

Morning pages


  1. First thing in the morning

  2. Write 3 pages in a notebook

  3. Can be about anything

  4. It quiets your mind

  5. Give it 20-30 minutes

  6. Be in a listening stance

Keep finding new hobbies – who cares if you don’t follow through – mix it up

Pastors especially need hobbies that give life

A suggested exercise: Ask a group of people to list 20 things they love to do that have nothing to do with church – many people can’t think of very much

Most leaders don’t know who they are apart from the church (exercise also helpful for parents about to be empty-nesters – don’t know who they are apart from children)

We enjoy the hobbies > share with others > becomes part of our work > becomes routine > we get out of balance > have to choose a new hobby

Tomorrow I’ll post my bliss list. Ten things that I absolutely love to do that have nothing to do with church. 

What’s yours?

#blisslist

 

 

© 2020 by Jenny Smith

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