Pastor's Pen: Burn Outs

‘Burn Outs’ for me as a young adult was leaving patches of tire rubber and smoke on the streets of downtown Evart! The excitement of showing you could outdo the others that went before you! Just for justification, tires were cheaper back then and so was gas, premium was .32 cents a gallon.

Today, ‘Burn Outs' are sometimes referring to those who have recently accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior, and wants to tell everyone, which sometimes leads to the pain of rejections. While at other times, volunteers may try to fill every position available at their church; this can lead to being overwhelmed or falling into one of the ‘Burn Outs’ phases of Christian life.

To avoid becoming one of those who suffer their own ‘Burn Outs,’ take a breath, then go to God and let Him direct our path. We have seen many lose their way by failing to meet their own expectations of what volunteering really should be and then get involved.

Apostle Paul tells about being part of the church family or body:

1 Corinthians 12:27-31 (NLT)

“All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it. Here are some of the parts God has appointed for the church: first are apostles, second are prophets, third are teachers, then those who do miracles, those who have the gift of healing, those who can help others, those who have the gift of leadership, those who speak in unknown languages.

"Are we all apostles? Are we all prophets? Are we all teachers? Do we all have the power to do miracles? Do we all have the gift of healing? Do we all have the ability to speak in unknown languages? Do we all have the ability to interpret unknown languages? Of course not! So you should earnestly desire the most helpful gifts. But now let me show you a way of life that is best of all.”

Now, first go in prayer to God, asking the Holy Spirit for direction in where to serve! There are many positions that need to be filled that the church pastor or staff have limited time to fill. There are many areas under the heading of ‘helps,’ such as greeters, ushers, children area, small group leaders, hospitality, parking lot, and many more depending on the church.

Following the lead of the Holy Spirit will prevent ‘Burn Out’ and will provide peace of mind. Finding out that along with our obedience and growth in our Lord, we may find ourselves filling a position that at first seems beyond our capability.

Let’s all get started, sharing some of the responsibilities in taking the Name of Jesus to the lost. Then feeding the body of Jesus, with Spiritual Food.

Remember, serving shouldn’t lead to ‘Burn Outs’ as Jesus sent the Disciples out two by two supporting each other, as volunteers let us support each other!

— Ron Witbeck is the associate pastor at Resurrection Life Church in Big Rapids.