For 36 years, I preached primarily for three churches. The last twenty years were spent with the Crestview Church of Christ in Waco, Texas. It was important that I stay fresh and alive in order to do this kind of ministry. Staying alive, however, is not just an issues for ministers. Each one of us, as we move through the various chapters of our lives, ought to give attention to this.
The following are a few suggestions:
Continue to Learn
Learning can keep us fresh and alive. Take a class. Read a book. Watch a video series. Listen to a lecture. Take notes. Do something that will stretch you! So often men and women remain where they are because they refuse to do anything that takes effort, even if it will help them grow. I read books, skim numerous newspapers, and listen to podcasts. I have taken an art class, a history class, and numerous classes at a seminary. I took these classes long after finishing my academic studies. These were taken not to earn a degree but to learn and grow.
Maintain a Real Curiosity About Life
Children often have a real sense of curiosity. As a result, they ask questions. In fact, they often ask lots of questions. Are you maintaining your curiosity about life? What are you curious about right now?
Take Care of Your Body
I realize that we each have a unique body and that some of us have particular health concerns. Having said this, I believe we feel better and are more likely to remain fresh, if we take care of our bodies. When I am not exercising or eating right, I feel sluggish and lacking energy.
Choose to Spend Time with Positive, Encouraging People
Have you noticed that other people can impact the way you feel? If I spend too much time with people who complain, gripe, and point out fault in most everything, it really begins to affect me. I even mimic these same behaviors. I also find that such an environment impacts my energy level. On the other hand, when I am with positive, encouraging people, I often feel energized.
Shoe Interest in Other People
Far too many of us talk too much about ourselves. Have you been in conversations where the other person talked on and on about herself and never even asked you a question? It really is possible for a person to be totally consumed with her own life and completely ignore everyone else. Such a person might talk about her problems as if no one else is dealing with tough issues. Yet, showing a real interest in other people can energize a conversation.