Sabbatical Part 2: I Feel Free
I’ve never had a Sabbatical before so I don’t know what to really expect or feel. I don’t know how I will feel a month from now or three months from now. However, I do know how I feel today, the day before my Sabbatical starts. I feel free! Let me explain.
I feel free to enjoy this gift from my church, my leadership, but especially from God. “Every good and perfect gift comes from above,” says James 1:17. Wouldn’t my Heavenly Father want me to enjoy a gift that He has given me ? Absolutely. So I will. I am free to enjoy this Sabbatical with a grateful heart.
I feel free financially. Delaying this Sabbatical a year has turned out to be a great thing. We’ve been able to save for it along the way and most of our plans are already paid for. I am quick to get stressed out when money is tight. I know most of you understand this. I have a tendency to quickly say, “No we can’t” when I see the price tag. It has been fun to plan for this Sabbatical with my wife, Candy, and say, “Yes we can!” many times. Such a cool sensation. I love it! Thank you Lord for your provision.
I feel free from what other people expect. I like to please people. Most people do too. But have learned the hard lesson that, no matter what I do, I can never please everyone. God has really worked on me in this area of my life the last 5 years. Proverbs 29:25 says, “The fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe.” I’ve been set free from this bondage and don’t want to return. So, if I want to write an article during my Sabbatical for this blog… I will. If I don’t want to… I won’t. Most people are supportive and excited for me to take this time away. Thank you. I know some are unsure and less excited. Okay. But I still plan on enjoying every bit of this gift.
I feel free because I am healthy again. I am really thrilled to be taking this Sabbatical now instead of three years ago. Back then I was suffering with depression and burnout. Every one of my tanks (emotional, physical, mental) were on empty. Not so today. They have filled up due to time, counseling, rest, and putting margin back in my life. It feel so good to be Barry again! I am so glad I can use this Sabbatical to be refreshed instead of being restored. Thank you God!
I feel free to leave knowing the healthy condition of our staff, leadership, and church. In my estimation, I have never seen our church healthier in the 21 years I’ve been here. The unity, vitality, and vibrancy is alive and well. This gives me great freedom to set aside the mantel of responsibility for a few months because what God is doing in our midst. Life change is happening all around us and God is blessing like never before. This only makes me excited to come back to continue experiencing the fruit that God is providing!
Thank you to God and GracePoint for blessing me in so many ways. I look forward to what God has in store for me and for our church in the next three months.
I love you all! Peace out!