I am back to work today after some much needed time off. It was a great time of reflection for myself and a time of healing for my family. See, in my previous post I discussed coming face to face with burning out. I was able to use this time to show my family how important they are to me, even more than my job. To prove it, I left my phone off, purposely didn’t check my email, and just spent time with my wife and young son. It was refreshing. I came back into work today to prepare for the weekend service, over the past several months this time preparing has been done by the “Grumpy Tech Director” because resentment and bitterness was welling up inside me. Today, I kid you not there was a song in my step (the assistant technical director wanted to slap me). God refreshed my spirit, I feel awesome and empowered to go about the work I have been called to do.
As I pulled into the parking lot that after a week off, I noticed that the church was still here. Now I know that seems silly to notice a 100,000+ square foot building, but I have somehow convinced myself that if I took time off the church wouldn’t survive. This ill-conceived need causes me to have a such a hard time unplugging from work. The weekend services won’t happen if I’m not there, the volunteers won’t know what to do if I am not there to lead. That’s pretty prideful isn’t it? To think that without me, God couldn’t meet his people is pretty outrageous pride. God has showed me that He’s in control and He wants me to rest. God rested on the 7th day and the universe didn’t fall apart did it?
I recently talked with a volunteer on my team. At one time he was a full time tech at another church in town. He shared with me that he had gone 2 years without taking a break. Working weekends, mid-week rehearsal and all the other things that go into the job. I feel so bad for him, because now, he’s just beginning to get back into church. These kind of work habits snuffs out your spirit like a candle.
I encourage you to take that vacation, use your day off, remove yourself from work. There is never a good time to take a vacation – there are always big things going on, crises will always happen. Believing in that false “need” that things won’t work if I’m not there is a dangerous place to get. What I have found is that coming in fresh from a vacation allows me to be much more productive. Now I know many people who say that coming back from vacation just adds stress. Don’t let that keep you from taking that time. No matter what you tell yourself, your body and mind needs you to take that downtime.
Start with jut your day off, then a weekend, then a week. Ease yourself into it, I assure you, you’ll never be the same. Take it from a recovering work-a-holic.