For years the question would come up “So what do you like to do besides ministry?”
I often would say “Well, I enjoy sports and politics.”
The reply: ”Do you get out to play much?” and I would say “Not as much as I’d like.”
The reality is that while I do enjoy sports (baseball, basketball and football), these were not really hobbies. I wasn’t in any leagues and I didn’t get out to clear my head very often.
Politics is a hobby to me but it’s not exactly a stress relief. In fact, honestly thinking through the issues, reading first-hand documentation and listening to the spin doctors all add strain and stress to an already stressful calling of launching a new church.
So what’s my hobby? I like to read. But I don’t like fiction. I only enjoy reading books that I can actually apply to my life and non-fiction strikes me as a waste of time. So reading isn’t a great hobby for me as it usually ends up in the theological or political world.
I got to thinking… “When do I refuel? When do I actually decompress and relax?” For me that answer is in long rides and nature. Typically I like to find a body of water and simply sit with my bible or just take time to recognize my own humanity. We live in such a linear world where our brain is only challenged to consider the things that most directly impact us and in the order of a timeline. Immediate and urgent tend to occupy our frontal lobe and the rest of our lives backs up like a line at Wal-Mart.
So again I thought. What if I could get the joy of relaxation and rest while getting my mind completely off of being a pastor and considering politics? What would give me an opportunity to learn something new while enjoying God’s creation.
Enter my new lime green hobby:
My 2009 Kawasaki Ninja 650r
In the weeks to come I will likely talk about what I’m learning and how it relates to faith and the ministry. For now I simply want to encourage my ministry friends in particular but everyone in general, find yourself a hobby! Be sure you have the ability to keep your sanity in the midst of all of the stress you juggle. This is doing it for me. I hope you’ll find what works for you.