Mondays are a peculiar day for pastors. Many pastors take Mondays off. As a pastor, I know I did. I never felt like I could take an effective Friday off with the growing pressure of the weekend message. I could never allow my mind to rest the way it needed. Monday on other hand? EVERYTHING could be procrastinated on Monday. There were long seasons when I was preaching four (or more) times every weekend. The emotional, spiritual, and physical toll this took on me required that I have a day to recover following the weekend!
Other pastors I know don't have a challenge with taking time off at the end of the week. They plan ahead effectively, they tend to be natural communicators, and don't feel anxiety about their message at the end of the week. Some pastors I know prefer to jump back into the week on Monday and "fix" everything that didn't go exactly right and get a jump on next Sunday.
Regardless of whether you take time off at the beginning or the end of the week, here are a few suggestions on how to deal with Mondays:
You have just done spiritual battle all weekend long. Preaching takes a great toll. Replenish yourself spiritually. Take some extended time to pray, seek God, worship. My Pastor Chris Hodges even watches his own favorite preacher(s) preach online before he begins the rest of his off day. Love that. If it's you off day, go do something. Most pastors don't need more physical rest. We need emotional rest. We need to get our minds focused on something besides ministry. Some pastors have told me: "Well ministry IS my hobby." You need counseling for that. Replenish some on Mondays!
2. Briefly review the weekend
No matter our off day, we are best at reviewing the weekend right after it has happened. Don't take too much time on this, but it's good to review while it's fresh! Don't be overly critical. Start with what went RIGHT. Then ask: What was WRONG? MISSING? CONFUSING? Are there things I need to speak with someone about this week? Are there things I need to talk about with my team? Make a few notes. 15 minutes or less and move on! What did you learn this weekend? What do you and /or your team need to improve on? Who coudl help? By the way, we would love to help.
3. Be thankful.
It's easy to look over the reports of the nickels and noses and focus on who or how many weren't here or didn't give. However, thankfully, some people did show up and serve and give! Ex[ress gratitude to God for the ones that did some and serve and give. If we aren't happy with fifty we won't be happy with five hundred, five thousand, or fifty thousand!
This is not your church. This is not your vision. This is God's vision and His church. His will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Offer your resignation privately to Him. You need to resign as the head of the church so He can be the Head. Let go of control. Freedom rests just on the other side of surrender.
5. Don't quit.
When did Satan attack Jesus with the greatest temptation? When He was tired and depleted. That is Monday for Pastors. Take a closer look at three temptations to Christ. The temptation to quit or give up are written all over them. Jesus has been tempted in every way we have, but He refused to quit until god was finished with Him. You should make that same decision today. Never decide to quit on a Monday. It almost always gets better by Tuesday! If it doesn't, well, let's talk tomorrow!
Shawn Lovejoy is Founder & CEO of CourageToLead.com. He loves coaching leaders through what keeps them up at night. He's been doing so since 2003. He's been married for 24 years to the most beautiful girl he's ever seen, and has three teenage kids that are his world.