Last night I had an overnight retreat with my peer group. We gathered at 7:00 p.m. last night, and I was back in the office by 1:30 today. It was a short time that was full of wonderful gifts. I became very much aware of the fact that I need to find balance in my life. We had almost an hour today for private reflection. I have joked about that if something isn't in the 2 miles between my church and the house, I haven't been there. Today I realized that rather than a joke, it should be a lament.
I am missing out on so much. There are things to see and do that I never experience in this area because I'm so focused on ministry. As I began to think about the need to change, my thought was, "so I can be a better pastor." If the goal of my time away from the church is to strengthen my work at the church, is it really time away?
I argue with myself-- Christ doesn't talk about the importance of finding balance in our lives. He tells us to lose our lives. What I realized during my brief retreat is that I need to spend some time reflecting on priorities. I need to spend some more time reflecting on my life and ministry and discerning what it is God wants me to do. I'm going to be on a retreat at the end of April, and I know now what the focus of that retreat will be. I'm already beginning to pull out some of the resources I'll want to take with me.
For now, I'm going to make sure I get time outside taking advantage of this beautiful weather we continue to have. I'm going to spend time celebrating God's good creation. I'm going to give thanks for my peer group, and the way they challenge me to become a better me.