I'm realizing, more and more, that being a pastor is about making decisions and sticking with them -- not second-guessing and doubting, but doing whatever it is that I'm doing with confidence. I know that could be applied to nearly everything in life... but it's where I'm at right now. I have a tendency to obsess about things -- you know, that late-in-the-night, can't-stop-thinking, bit...
I've made some decisions this past week and while I don't know how they will play out long-term, I know that they were what I had to do for my own sense of well-being and health. I don't like being so tired and on-edge that I snap at well-meaning parishioners when they ask me how I am. Two funerals and family in town on the heels of being away for church business for a week doesn't do a girl good, I've learned. And, yet, this is what pastors do -- when people die, we bury them. When people get sick, we visit them. When people have a problem and sit in our office, we listen and possibly refer. This is what I've been waiting to do, and now that I'm the only show around, it's what I'm doing.
A week ago I wrote about possibly feeling human sometime "next week." Perhaps that's a perpetual cry as a week has come and gone and I'm even farther away from recovering, but I don't believe that it has to be that way -- I don't believe that we're called as pastors, as mothers, as children of God, as people to run ourselves ragged so that others around us can be well. If I care for everyone around me but never for myself, how long will that model last? Not much longer is what I'm discovering. I knew this all along, knew it in my heart and wrote about it in my candidacy essays, but knowing something and living it out are two different things sometimes.
I live in an area where everyone is incredibly busy and over-programmed. I've said before that I want church to be a place where, kids particularly, can come and simply be, where they can rest in their faith and not have to do. I need to take my own words to heart and lead by example. I'm still learning. Still learning, for sure.