Do you make your day off an uncompromising priority?
Or do you cheat too often, resting only when you “can”? Most youth workers report that they fail to take a regular weekly Sabbath.
And all of the time, they fail to understand the consequences that stem from that decision.
There’s a reason God commands us to rest. He knows we can’t function without it. You know why I don’t work on Saturday? For the same reason that I don’t kill people or provide false witness. This is too often lost on church professionals, but the Sabbath is one of the Ten Commandments, and God was as serious about this one as he was about the others.
Remember this. Skipping your Sabbath is absolutely Biblically disobedient.
Just in case that’s not cause enough for you: People who rest are more effective workers. Try this article or a dozen others just like it. People who take time to rest and recharge simply get more done. That means there’s an excellent chance you’ll actually get more done in a fully-charged 40-hour week than if you run yourself ragged.
Sabbath-skipping is the best way to ensure you burn out of the ministry. In my interviews with former youth workers, 80% report that they didn’t take a regular Sabbath.
I’m sure there are important things that are keeping you away from your day off, but I promise you they are not more important than your career and your ministry.
Your body-clock is going to take a break anyway. Maybe you won’t take a day off, but you’ll almost certainly make it up in other ways. You might take a nap during the week or spend a few hours zoned-out and cruising YouTube.
Whatever you do, remember that the Sabbath isn’t just some suggestion from a blogger; it’s a commandment from God, for your protection and benefit.
What are things that keep you from taking a Sabbath?What do YOU need to do to make keeping this commandment a priority?
Aaron Helman is on a mission to help end the epidemic of youth worker burnout. He writes Smarter Youth Ministry to help youth workers with their biggest frustrations – things like managing time and stress. He is also the youth minister at Firehouse Youth Ministries in South Bend, Indiana.