Most of my days are structured and filled to the brim with things to do. While I enjoy them, and get a lot done, one key element is missing: free-flowing creative time with God. This week, I am spending time away, working on a writing project. In this case, away isn’t far away—I am at home, one mile away from my office. But now that I have stepped away from the intensive work of teaching, leading, and meetings, I am receiving a gift that I had forgotten I need: unhurried time.
Jesus spent unhurried time away from healing, teaching and mentoring. He was the better for it. His life reminds me that spiritual leaders need unhurried time with the Spirit. Are you taking time away to hear from your soul?
This week I am re-writing one of the Creating a Culture of Renewal® workbooks. I am writing about how a shift in congregational culture begins with an internal shift. Even as I write those words, my soul is making sure I hear the message loud and clear.
What message is your soul wanting to give you? I encourage you to give yourself the gift of unhurried time so that you can hear it too.
The truth is, your people can’t go farther than you can lead them. If you’d like a more responsive, faith-filled congregation, it is time to do the inner work yourself. As you grow in both faith and skill, the world around you shifts. You will see it in your personal relationships and in the culture of the congregation you lead. That’s because an internal shift in consciousness, faith, and expectation precedes a shift in the people and culture around you. Both John, the cousin of Jesus, and Jesus himself demonstrate this truth. They each grew in the knowledge and grace of God before they began their public, prophetic work. Their inner work was a prerequisite to co-creating miracles with God. In the same way, both the Twelve and the Seventy grew in their understanding of Jesus and his teachings before they could cast out demons, heal the sick or preach the Kingdom. If you would like to see the miraculous come to life, gift yourself the gift of unhurried time to grow in the knowledge and grace of God. Then watch out world, because you will be unstoppable!
(Adapted from the forthcoming 3rd edition of Culture Shift, the Track 3 Workbook of Creating a Culture of Renewal®.)
Friends, the world needs your gift of spiritual leadership even more than they need you to be available to them 24/7/365. I pray you give yourself and your soul the gift of unhurried time. I’ll see you on the flip side!