Yesterday, I talked about the struggle I face every Christmas – trying to enjoy an amazing holiday season in light of particular musical stresses that seem to be pretty common to worship leaders. However, over the past few years, I’ve done a couple of things to ease stress both personally and at home.
- Keep my mouth shut. The worst possible thing a worship leader can do is come home and unload all of his frustration on his poor wife and kids. Granted, Kristen is my partner in all things and she knows me better than anyone in the world. But if I’m a bit more careful about how much I “bring home,” it tends to help me focus more clearly once a new workday kicks off. Keeping my mouth shut creates some good boundaries that help to attack the work in a healthy way.
- Stop worrying. Seems simple enough. But it’s a hard thing. Worship leaders live and die by being aware of their congregants and working hard at analyzing what’s happening. Doing that often gets you dangerously close to people-pleasing. The smartest thing I can do is work hard and keep a loose grip on the need for approval.
- Compromise carefully. Anytime we start backing off on our God-given calling in ministry simply to honor tradition, we’re in dangerous territory. For me, it’s critical that I remember that I have a purpose every single Sunday and while the season may change, the job doesn’t. Remembering that helps me to actually enjoy the process of trying to build a service that will honor long-lasting (and deserved) tradition while making sure that our focus is still to give God honor.
That’s my list…what do YOU do to combat holiday stress?