Scott Hodge


Teaching Breaks

Sep 24, 2012

Ran into a pastor the other day who hadn’t taken a weekend off from teaching in 15 months.  FIFTEEN MONTHS.  This sparked a bunch of thoughts, so I thought I’d share 7 simple reasons why pastors should must take time off from teaching from time to time.  There are more than ten, these are just off the top of my head.


1 – You’re probably not as great as you think you are.

2 – Burnout sucks.

3 – Your community needs breaks from you.

4 – Writing sermons is not the most important thing you do.  (Thanks Dave Gibbons for helping me see this.)

5 – Your community needs to hear other voices.

6 – Your team needs you to lead and invest in them more.

7 – Your brain needs a breather – which in turn will allow it to function & flow more creatively.

Many pastors are afraid to take more time off from teaching because they’re afraid that the church might lose momentum eventually fall apart.  Really?  If your church is that fragile, you have some other things you need to figure out.  Relax.  Besides, if you don’t take time off from teaching, there’s a pretty good likelihood that you will eventually fall apart.

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3 Responses to “Teaching Breaks”

  1. This is an incredible reminder – a must for pastors to be effective in many, many areas. The best leaders are reproducing themselves in others. We need to get past the fear of others being “better than us”, or “losing momentum”, etc.

    Thanks for the reminder!

  2. Mike Andrews says:

    What too many just thought:

    1 – Yes I am. My wife tells me so.
    2 – It’s ok, I’m fireproof.
    3 – Nah, they love me! They’re even having a special day next month to appreciate me.
    4 – Of course it is. Why else would I spend all those hours tucked away alone in my office?
    5 – They’re busy, so I listen to the voices, then tell my people what the voices said.
    6 – My team? Eh… I’m not sure they’re going to last much longer anyway. Seems like bailing water from a sinking ship with a milk jug.
    7 – Who needs to be creative when I’ve got 20 years of sermons on file?

    Sorry. That was a little snarky. Not taking a break for a while seems to have made me a little grouchy and defensive…

  3. [...] Hodge had a great post on his blog about reasons pastors need to take teaching breaks.  This is a good reminder for us [...]

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