Self-Care

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When You Feel Like a Failure

Whether you've truly failed―or you just feel like a failure―the experience can actually be a blessing.
When You Feel Like a Failure
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“Well, Cara, I’m not really sure what to say, but you failed to do what we hired you to do.” The chairperson folded her hands on her lap, and looked at me blankly. I stared back at her, numb to the world around me.

Glancing at the paper in front of her, she went on to list all of the many ways she believed I had failed at in my first two years of ministry. ...

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Make an Appointment with Your Heavenly Doctor

As we lead others, we can’t overlook our own need for God’s healing.
Make an Appointment with Your Heavenly Doctor
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As leaders, we can find ourselves so busy administering the cure for the incurable situations in other people’s lives that we somehow forget about the painfully self-destructive situations in our own. We find ourselves having private conversations about our pains, only to sweep it under the rug once we find temporary relief―or distraction.

Being in pain will cause us ...

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Sleep: The Neglected Gift

As a pastor, I learned I needed to embrace God's gift of sleep.
Sleep: The Neglected Gift
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Diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, obesity, high blood pressure, and severe sleep apnea, I changed my diet and began to exercise. In a year, I lost 27 pounds, resulting in a decrease in pain and 2 dress sizes. But I still dragged through each day as if there were a weight on my back.

Being a workaholic mother, wife, grandmother, speech-language pathologist, church planter, ...

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Sabbath Is More than Rest

Everyone wants a break and more time off, but Sabbath offers more.
Sabbath Is More than Rest
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I have struggled over the years as I’ve tried to find balance in practicing Sabbath. As a new believer, I took the Ten Commandments as gospel and thought a lot about what it means to keep it holy. For me, that easily translated into going to church, and then coming home to investigate the passage that was preached. I spent the afternoon combing the verses that came before ...

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Lead from Where You Are

Give to others from your own walk with God.
Lead from Where You Are
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"You walk with God and teach others out of that." My professor's words etched themselves onto my soul as he spoke.

Over a decade later, I have yet to forget them. In fact, they have become a simple reminder―a scripted placard hanging on the doorpost of my mind―that have guided me through many seasons of ministry.

As women, we often put so much pressure on ourselves ...

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Break Your Day into Thirds

A creative way to avoid burnout in ministry
Break Your Day into Thirds
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I was only a couple of years into ministry and already on the verge of burn out. As the director of a youth outreach organization, my job often involved early morning breakfast meetings with donors, followed by administrative duties throughout the morning and early afternoon. Most of my direct time with high school and middle school students started in the late afternoon, ...

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Lamenting Failure

God is doing something bigger and better than your project.
Lamenting Failure
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I knew my idea was going to work. The younger women were complaining they needed someone to advise and help them. The older women were sad about feeling sidelined and losing their sense of purpose. So, the obvious thing was to start a mentoring ministry. We’d pair younger women with older women and everyone would benefit.

We asked anyone interested to sign up, and we ...

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Join Our Summer Study Group

Meet with women from across the country for community, encouragement, and discussion.
Join Our Summer Study Group
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I was naïve when I took my first staff position at a church—about a lot of things. As the minister for small groups and community outreach, I was eager to get started and excited to join people together in meaningful community gatherings. The church didn’t have small groups prior to my arrival, and I knew I’d face some battles getting buy-in, but there ...

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How I Found a Support Network

5 ways I formed a group of women leaders around me
How I Found a Support Network
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I remember the first time I found “my people.” I had been invited to present several workshops at a conference for women ministry leaders. It was the first time I was exposed to a group of people just like me. Women! And not just women, but women who were leaders! In ministry! In the large group sessions, in the workshops, and in the speakers’ room—these ...

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Four Questions to Ask When Complacency Calls

With all the politicking, protesting, and terrorizing, it’s tempting to give up the fight.
Four Questions to Ask When Complacency Calls
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My husband recently teased, "What are you freedom fighting this week?" I snickered, because we both know how my empathetic tendencies get ignited when bedlam wreaks havoc on our broken world, and within the people to which we minister. I want to always be ready to battle for hurting people while pointing them to the God who heals. But too often lately, I find myself ...

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Displaying 1–10 of 270 Articles
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