Nobody Ever Said the Pastorate & Ministry was a Cake Walk!

Creative ministry and organizational leadership have been a couple of my passions for years!  In these days of COVID-19 challenges and church/ministry interruptions pastoral and ministry leaders often need some encouragement.  If we at Russ Hobbs Ministries can assist you with a programming or interim ministry need feel free to contact us at rhobbs@dejazzd.com or by calling us at (717) 572-0532.  We will return your call or respond to your e-mail within 48 hours to discuss some of our programming and consultation possibilities with you.

Serving God and shepherding the flock is NOT always an easy or unencumbered CALL.  We know that, but we also realize that bringing the power of Jesus Christ to needy lives is satisfying pursuit and opportunity.

If you have been called to ministry you are aware of what that calling, preparation and years of service has entailed.  Perhaps, you’re getting tired, burnt out, frustrated, angry, lonely or coping with so many temptations and discouragements that you simply don’t know which way to turn.  But remember, as God has called you HE has also promised to never leave OR forsake you.  Do you recall having said to others in your sermons and counseling sessions that.. When people say they are “spiritually dry,” they usually mean they feel distant from God or are struggling to grow spiritually. They don’t see God working, the burdens of life press in, and they begin to feel discouraged. They search for God “in a dry and parched land where there is no water” (Psalm 63:1)—it is a time of spiritual dryness. There may be several reasons for spiritual dryness.

Sometimes spiritual dryness is due to personal sin. Sin can cause us to feel distant from God because we are attempting to live for ourselves instead of living for God. Unconfessed sin can cause us to lose the joy associated with our salvation (see Psalm 51:12). We can remedy the time of dryness by confessing our sin to God (see 1 John 1:9 and Psalm 32). And we must take God at His Word: “Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded” (James 4:8). To be “double-minded” is to maintain a dual loyalty, such as trying to serve both God and mammon (Matthew 6:24). Attempts to do so will dry us up spiritually.

Some people feel spiritually dry because of physical, mental, or emotional pain. When we are sick, it is often more difficult to focus on God or spiritual things. After Elijah defeated the prophets of Baal, he ran a great distance because he feared Queen Jezebel would put him to death (1 Kings 19:1–5). He was physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted, and he wanted to die. God gave Elijah sustenance and rest (verses 5–8) and then used that time of weakness to work in Elijah’s life in a new way.

God sometimes allows a person to reach a low point before intervening in a powerful way. The time before that intervention can feel spiritually dry. The Israelites trapped by the Red Sea are an example (Exodus 14). The people were caught between Pharaoh’s army and the sea. There seemed to be no escape. God seemed to have led them into a death trap. Yet it was during this time God chose to intervene with a miracle that is still talked about thousands of years later: He divided the sea to allow the Israelites to escape on dry land!

God offers some solutions to our spiritual dryness. We have already noted God’s command to draw near to Him with the promise that He will draw near to us. In addition, we are called to seek God through His Word: “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16–17). In God’s Word we see the faithfulness, mercy, and love of God. It is God’s Word that sanctifies us (John 17:17).

A second way to overcome spiritual dryness is through prayer. Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” A third way to overcome spiritual dryness is fellowship with other believers. David was likely experiencing a time of spiritual dryness when he wrote this psalm: “How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and day after day have sorrow in my heart?” (Psalm 13:1–2).  Have you ever felt like that?  If so, we want you to know we’re here to lift you in prayer, encourage you with the Word of God and be a friend that you can share with in ministry.

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