Carey Nieuwhof Podcast Listeners
Welcome, Carey Nieuwhof Listeners! Thanks for stopping by GriefSurvivor.com.
It's our honor to offer you two free resources:
The first is for anyone hoping to avoid flaming out in life or ministry. Click here for the PDF or scroll down to read the article.
Also, here is the Grief Survivor Six Week Group Study Guide adapted from my book, Grief Survivor- 28 Steps toward Hope and Healing.
Please feel free to download the pdf file and print for anyone interested in leading a grief support group at your church or organization.
Are You Flaming Out?
Flame out: “jet engine failure when the flame that normally burns continuously during operation goes out. Without heat from the flame, the engine can no longer provide propulsion.”
Whether you’re a Fortune 500 CEO, a full-time parent or serve in ministry, the demands of life can sneak up on you and take you down.
Do any of the following statements describe you?
“I used to love my life, but now am not certain I’m in the right seat on the bus, or worse yet, on the right bus!”
“Getting out of bed in the morning is becoming more and more difficult.”
“People and situations that were once energizing, are now sucking the ever-loving life out of me.”
“I secretly dream of sneaking away from the chaos to become a Wal-Mart greeter.”
Four years ago- after a long, wonderful, yet increasingly overwhelming season as Care Ministry Coordinator at NewSpring Church- that was me. It didn’t happen overnight; but the downhill descent was real, and I did not see it coming. Even though there were plenty of staff members and volunteers who would have been delighted to help, my mindset was jacked up. I was determined I could accomplish this monstrous feat all by myself. Big mistake!
Three things I wish someone had told me:
You are not going to get it all right. No matter how many fires you put out in the course of a day, whether it’s comforting crying kids, making multi-million dollar deals, or in my case, meeting with people whose worlds had been rocked by sickness, death in the family or other unforeseen life issues… there are some things we can not fix. It’s OK. The Lord is the only One designed to ultimately make all things right. Not us.
Let somebody help you. During my last year as Care Coordinator, I believe there were close to 5000 people attending the Anderson, SC on a weekend- and a couple multi-site campuses had just been born. As you might imagine, there was always a fear that a care crisis could fall through the cracks.
Over time, our small team realized it was physically impossible for us to care for that many people. But more importantly, that God never called us to be super heroes! Thankfully, we were reminded of a timeless strategy for breaking responsibilities down into manageable bites- Exodus 18: 13-26.
As we began to apply the principle of identifying gifted leaders to lead smaller groups, life got a lot less stressful, and care improved dramatically. Even though changes didn’t happen overnight, (and ministry will always be a gigantic marvelous, yet messy moving target!) this model works, no matter what size your organization or church is. In the words of Andy Stanley, “Life change happens in circles, not rows.”
Rest is not a four letter word. OK, technically it is. But not the bad kind. God was so serious about rest, He showed us how it is done. After a world-changing week of creating the earth, skies, living creatures, plants and humans in six days- whew!- He rested.
It’s interesting that the Creator of the Universe was able to work six on/ one off; but many leaders aren’t convinced the earth can rotate without us for twenty-four hours.
Rest is not laziness. Do something fun- go cycling, swimming or cookout with friends. Creativity, clarity and energy can skyrocket after a real day of rest. And, don’t leave home for your next vacation without reading Carey Nieuwhof’s compelling discoveries about vacation.
In his phenomenal book, Overwhelmed, my friend and pastor, Perry Noble tells about a dark season of anxiety and depression that threatened to take his life. Perry speaks the truth, and will make you laugh all at the same time. If you’re barely hanging on, you don’t want to miss this book!
How do you fight off flame out?