Another Easter has come and gone. If you work in ministry like I do, then you’re likely still feeling the effects of last weekend. At Redemption, we invested 120 hours of prayer, sent out 600 hand-written invites, held a church-wide prayer meeting, shot daily video devotionals, remembered Good Friday and celebrated Easter Sunday with record attendance.
As a result, I’m tired, our staff is tired, and our teams are tired. Our hearts are full, but our tanks are empty.
You may not be in ministry full time, but we all have certain days or seasons in which we have to invest far more energy than normal. Maybe you’re planning a wedding, a party, a graduation, or other event. There is often an immense letdown after whatever it is that you’ve invested so much in.
How we steward these seasons is critical. If you ignore the fatigue, try to push through, or run on fumes, you will do great damage to your body, mind, emotions and soul. You have to replenish. Here are six ways to refill your tank after Easter (or any other big day)…
1. Get quality sleep.
Some days what you need most is a good nap. Turn off the TV, close your computer, shut down the part of your mind that’s fixated on what could have gone better. Quality sleep is one of the most significant ways to replenish your tank after days of high output.
2. Allow God’s Word to renew your mind.
I’m prone to discouragement after big days like Easter. My thinking is typically negative and I have to fight the propensity to allow what I feel to dictate what's real. These are the times it’s most critical to allow God’s Word to renew my mind (Romans 12:2). I need His perfect thoughts to be the filter through which I change my imperfect ones.
3. Unplug from social media.
Just turn it off. Ignore Twitter, Facebook, Instagram…whatever you turn to like an addict looking for a fix. Social media is not always bad, but it isn’t always helpful. Don’t invest time mindlessly scrolling through timelines. Just turn it off.
4. Pursue what inspires you.
When my tank gets low, I typically want to quit. I can’t imagine having to create or produce anything new again. But it passes. I’m just worn out and need to refill my tank. Maybe you need to watch a good movie, listen to music, go for a walk, read a book, or visit an art gallery - know yourself and be intentional about consuming inspiration.
5. Surround yourself with the right people.
You need to be around people that fill, rather than drain your tank. Spend time with your spouse and kids. Have dinner with good friends. Hang with people who make you laugh. Make space for people who have a track record of encouraging, rather than discouraging you.
6. Eat well and exercise hard.
All I want to do when I’m worn out is eat like a whale and sit on the couch. These are counterproductive choices. Instead, you should eat healthy meals and get in a few good workouts. Go for a run, take a hike, pop in an Insanity disc and do interval training until you want to kill Shaun T. It will be difficult to get going but worth it when it’s over.
Many good pastors fall victim to the enemy’s ploys when their tanks are low. Don’t do it! Be prepared, press into God, and pursue the good means He has given you to replenish what your service has diminished. Sunday’s coming - let’s get our tanks refilled, our minds refocused, and energy restored.