10 Keys to Sustaining the Ministry Life

These essential practices will prepare you for the long haul.

Pastors and church planters face enormous demands as we try to juggle family responsibilities, ministry, and often, school and part-time jobs. How can we live sustainable lives? We read of tragic pastoral failures on a weekly basis. Most pastors don't last in the ministry for five years—perhaps the only way we pastors are like pro football players! I've been a pastor for 25 years, and these ten practices have enabled me to pastor for the long-haul:

1. Build a rock-solid daily personal devotional life with God. This simply means that you spend time every day soaking in God's presence. Pressure is not the problem—weak foundations are the problem. If your foundation is shaky, you won't be able to handle very much at all. If you are going to be able to achieve and do the great things that God has in store for you to achieve and do, you need a strong foundation. The granite of your life is your rock-solid personal time with God every day.

2. Choose a prayer partner, a peer with whom ...

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