The Work of Real Self-Care: Holding Pain and Hope Together

“The work of real self-care is to hold pain and hope together.” -Pooja Lakshmin Back in December at a pastors’ gathering, my local denominational body used a polling app to ask the group a series of questions about stress and burnout. The consensus was clear: this was a group of people reporting high amounts of […]

Beatitudes for Clergy for a New Year

Blessed are you who are showered with gifts and cards and gratitude this holy season, for your worth is known far and wide. Blessed are you whose people greet Pastoral Appreciation Month with a deafening silence, and yet you care for them; for your persistent, relentless love reflects God’s love for us. Blessed are you […]

How Are You– Really?

The other night in Bible study I posed the question: Is anyone happy?  People are not OK right now. Whether it is ongoing pandemic fatigue, financial stress, job dissatisfaction, or general feelings of ennui, many of us are feeling burned out, surrounded by other burned out people. It’s not a very life-giving situation. If you […]

A Spirituality of Exhaustion

by Lara Blackwood Pickrel This summer has been no different than any of the other summers experienced in the decade I’ve spent as a youth minister: campfire smoke, bug spray, a few thousand miles packed sardine-style inside rental vans, silly bands (this year both on the radio and on teenagers’ wrists), mandatory abuse reporting, saggy […]