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Is There a Master Class for That?

I love preaching and teaching. I love preparing. I love the connection that comes with speaking to a group. I love impacting people's lives with what I say. I think I am pretty good at it, and I am not alone. I read a report (you can read it here), from Barna today that talked about how pastors think about their preaching. It had many good insights. Although I found myself in the large portion of pastors that think they preach pretty well, I wondered about something intriguing I saw in the article. Like many other schools and organizations, Barna has a master class on preaching. That is not a bad thing at all. I applaud everyone who wants to hone their craft and continue to grow to be a more proficient teacher.

The rub for me was when I thought about a past Barna report on the state of pastors' emotional, mental, familial, and physical health. There was no master class offered. There were no weight loss camps or workshops that key in on pastoral self-care. There may have been an advertisement for some counseling, but that seems to be all the help we offer pastors who are struggling in their role. The same is true for ministry leaders as well as non-profit leaders. We send them to counseling to help them. I am not advocating against counseling at all. I believe that a skilled counselor can help tremendously in many areas. There are retreat centers, counseling centers, and individual ministries like Standing Stone that are helpful to pastors. They each have their place in self-care. But something is missing.

Our denomination has two places you can spend a week for free. Each site has counselors to help you process through life. This is beautiful, but it falls short of what is needed to effect real change and rest.

The Go Well Project addresses things often missed by counseling and retreat centers. I wish it could be done while on a ten-week break (sabbatical) from ministry and work, but this is very difficult for most. At Go Well Project, we address the individual's physical health precisely because it affects the entire person. Our bodies are not cut off from our souls. How we sleep, eat, and move are just some factors that affect the mental and emotional health of the individual. We can't talk about the brain like it is disconnected from the body. How we live in our body affects our brain, which affects how we mentally and emotionally process.

Go Well Project also addresses life management, which is time management on steroids. We have to regulate our days and weeks, or we will find ourselves in either the middle of a self-centered, nonproductive, unsatisfying life (which is rare among pastors and leaders) or amid hurry sickness being led by the tyranny of the urgent. Many factors within our life contribute to stress and unhealthiness. Ignoring those things and people needing your attention the most is not helpful in fulfilling your mission.

You may need some counseling, and you almost certainly need a retreat of some kind, but you also may need what the Go Well Project has put together to bring well-being to your entire being. If you are interested in Go Well Project for yourself or someone else, connect with us, and let's start a conversation.

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