New beginnings. Fresh starts. Clean slates. Second chances. We love 'em all. They carry so much promise, give us so much hope. If we blow it today, we can start again tomorrow. We conclude that the answer to yesterday's failure is today's success. If I preached a bad sermon this past Sunday, I can shed my sense of failure by preaching a great sermon next Sunday. We're driven by the need to succeed.

Every one of us (especially church leaders) is addicted to performancism. Yes, I know that's not technically a word. But performancism is a certain mindset that equates our identity and value with our performance. My appearance, my intelligence, how my kids turn out, my reputation, my achievements—these things become synonymous with my worth. Successes add to my worth; failures subtract. This mindset is wrong.

I'm not saying that accomplishments aren't important. There's a big difference between enjoying what we do and depending on it to deliver meaning ...

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