Written by:Tendai Chitsike
Article source: JOY! Magazine

Taking a sabbatical provides church leaders, like myself, with an opportunity to reflect on a great truth that we often ignore, to our detriment. Here, away from the role of leading a congregation, one must be sustained by the other side of the coin – that pastors not only lead congregations, they are fellow believers as well. As such, we are not a superhuman elite breed, but like the rest of the body of Christ, we can only thrive when we are recipients of God’s truth, grace, and encouragement through our fellow believers. If we live within this unbiblical environment of disconnection, the consequences of unchecked discouragement, isolation, and pride can wreak havoc for church leaders, their families, the congregation, and the overall mission of God’s church.

Pastors, take this truth to heart
I remember wrestling with this reality for the first time in Paul David Tripp’s book: A Dangerous Calling. Here, Paul brought home this overlooked truth that pastors are a part of Christ’s body, but often do not live as such. What particularly struck me was his insistence that they become part of a small group they do not lead, where they take off the proverbial hat of leadership and wear the hat of a believer. Sad to say, this was a significant blind spot I sorely needed to read about and apply. If this applies to you too, I urge you to take this truth to heart. Even if denominational tradition or ‘man of god’ delusions of grandeur stand opposed to this, may I humbly suggest that this is not only a good idea, but a Bible truth as well. Too much is at sake, and far too many of us have fallen by the wayside as we neglected ministry from fellow believers.

Tendai Chitsike is the pastor of Every Nation Church in Grahamstown. Email: engrahamstown@gmail.com, Twitter: @tendaichitsike

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