From the Desktop of the Pastor – Week of the 5th Sunday after Pentecost

Hi everyone,

I know, late again. But in my defense, it is finally summer. And I know that the summer solstice was like over a week ago, but it isn’t really summer until the kids are out of school and the weather is (somewhat) nice. And starting yesterday sometime in the early afternoon, it is finally summer.

So I spent some time with the kids instead of writing this blog post. We went outside and did stuff. We came back inside and did stuff. I still had to get some work done, but I was met with a tremendous amount of guilt by doing it. And I’ll admit that I’ve been awfully distant from my family over the past few months.

I have been distant because of this pandemic. I was distant because I was busy working. I was distant because I’m afraid that if I don’t do a good job at my job, it would reflect on me as a person and as a pastor. But I’ve come to realise that came at the expense of me as a father and husband.

That’s not to say that a good father and husband has to suck at his job, however. I’m just saying that I’ve allowed the burden of my work get to me and I am feeling the fatigue that all my colleagues warned me about back in like April. And so in order for me to continue to do my job, I need to take time off from that job.

So what I’m saying is, that at the approval of our church council, I’m going to take the next couple of weeks off. It is just time for me to recharge a bit as this whole pandemic has gotten to all of us in some shape or form. You won’t be left high and dry, however, I’ll figure something out for you for Sunday worship and stuff. And it’s not like I can go anywhere, so I will definitely be around and but an email away.

Still, there is the matter of next week’s texts. They are:
Zechariah 9:9-12
Psalm 145:8-14
Romans 7:15-25a
Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30

Jesus says his yoke is easy and his burden is light. I think this is how I came to the conclusion that it is time for me to take some time off. And as Paul was talking about doing the stuff he doesn’t want to do and not doing the stuff he knows he should do, that spoke to me as well. Not saying that I don’t want to work, but I don’t want to spend so much time away from my family but I kept doing it and I knew I should take some time off (or at least a day off) but I kept not doing it. And so now I am where I am, which is really tired and borderline out of my mind.

And while I really do enjoy my work, as proclaiming the gospel and playing with the technology in putting out the worship videos was actually a lot of fun. It is, however, time consuming. And the burden of not sleeping much isn’t all that light. In fact, it is heavy.

So that gave me a hint that maybe this burden was only my burden, and not one that was put on me by Jesus. It is something that I took on myself and decided by myself that I need to do. I’m not saying that it doesn’t have to be done, I’m just saying that it doesn’t have to be done only by me all the time.

And so it’s important for us to know the difference. When do we put too much pressure on ourselves to perform thinking that it is what we must do? When do we stress over things that we don’t have to, thinking “if not us, then who”? When do we get distracted by the work in front of us and forget about the things that matter more, like health, relationship, and community?

Jesus’ yoke is easy and burden light. That is because what Jesus calls us to is life-giving and rewarding. Let’s embrace that gift, let’s revel in it, and be thankful for the ability to tell the difference.

Thanks be to God! See you in a couple weeks!

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