Pastor, Get a Life. Seriously.

Pastoring can be a tough gig. The work is never done. People can be changeful creatures. Ministry is so constant, need never takes a holiday, crises never cease, and criticism rolls on like a never-ending stream. Every time you deliver a sermon, the next one is a mere six days away. Every time someone volunteers, someone else resigns. For every repentant soul, there are half a dozen who are making eyes at the devil. Or so it seems at times.

That's why I'm convinced every pastor needs a good hobby. Something that can counter the frustrations and struggles of ministry. Something to make Mondays a little brighter. Something to replenish the empty fuel tank. Something sufficiently different from ministry pursuits to constitute a mini-vacation every week or so...if only for an hour or two. Like:
Jigsaw puzzles. New ones, so there are no missing pieces. Because, unlike ministry, they can be finished!

Hiking or Jogging. Gets you outside. Gets your dopamine flowing. Every run or hike you complete is a small victory.

Photography. When you take a nice picture, it stays took. It never turns around to bite you, either.

Sudoku. Numbers go in squares. Numbers add up. Numbers stay in squares. Numbers seldom get mean. Unlike people.

Writing. Unlike ministry, in which (ultimately) few things are in your control, words do what you tell them to do. Most of the time, anyway.

Music. Whether you collect, play, or attend, music really doth hath charms to soothe the savage breast.

Travel. Nothing like the open road--or open sea--to clear your head and renew your soul. Some find a bike or motorcycle helpful. Others seek a change of climate. Some RV it. Whatever works for you, but it should be something that can be repeated more than a few times a year.

Grandkids. Not sure it qualifies as a hobby, but one of the most restorative things I do is pick up my grandkids and take them out to lunch. Or take them on a picnic. Or to the zoo or children's museum. It's often the emotional high point of my week.
These are just a few ideas, of course. What about you? Do you have a hobby that refreshes you?

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