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Are You a Pharisee? Surviving Religious Burnout Part 2

How to Get Off The Spiritual Treadmill

My new mini-book, Surviving Religious Burnout, Launches Tuesday, August 4. You can pre-order it now on Amazon, Kindle, Apple Books, and Barnes and Noble. I wanted to give you a preview so here is an excerpt from Chapter 1.

Video Version

For the next few weeks I will be posting a video version of my blogs. Going to try this format out to see how you like it. So below is basically this same blog in video form. Let me know what you think. Should I keep doing this?

Have You Eve Met a Pharisee?

“I believe God made me for a purpose, but He also made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure.”

Eric Liddell, Chariots of Fire

The Religious Rut

Have you ever met someone who is proud to be a modern-day Pharisee? Probably not. Most well-meaning believers are unaware they have slipped into a religious rut that resembles legalism. Their good works look like a thriving faith, but the roots are different. Without making a change, those stuck in this Christian performance trap will see their excitement replaced with exhaustion.

The Spiritual Treadmill

You can only run on this spiritual treadmill for so long before you realize you are going nowhere. The frustration of always moving but never arriving is enough to cause anyone to become discouraged and give up. 

Ask any of the millions of joggers in the world, and they will tell you running is not just meant to be work. Running should refresh you as you experience unexplored placed and familiar ones in a new way.

It is the same with your faith. Christianity is not an exercise in discipline. It should be an enjoyable, meaningful experience. 

It Is Not About Good Works

The Christian life should produce good works. It is not about good works. It is about knowing God and making Him known. Your good deeds are only sustainable when they come from an overflow of your love relationship with Jesus. When your position in Christ comes before your performance for Christ you are on your way to a refreshing life as a believer.

That is the point of this book. I want to help you get out of your spiritual rut and into an enjoyable, meaningful Christianity. To do this, we will have to dig up the roots of burnout. After that, we will plant seeds of truth that will lead to a flourishing faith.

What is Religious Burnout?

Religious burnout is a cycle of gaining your worth and security as a believer from what you do for God, instead of who you are in Christ. Some people may call it legalism. Others refer to it as being a Pharisee. I see it as a pit any of us can fall into on the path of good intentions.

A Christian performance trap will wear you out. It will ask more from you than God does. In return, it causes you to become judgmental and never feel content as a believer. True holiness is rooted in your connection to God, not your commitment to rules or your religious performance. Following rules may change your appearance, but only a love relationship with Jesus can transform your heart.

We all want to get the most out of our relationship with God. That is why you need to escape the Christian performance trap and take part in true high-performance Christianity. 

So what do you think? I would love to hear from you about this topic as well as if you think I should keep doing youtube videos on my posts.

I would love it if you cheked out my new mini-book on Amazon, Kindle, Apple Books, and Barnes and Noble. It helps tremendously if you leave a review. After reading this post you definitely qualify as a reviewer!

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Surviving Religious Burnout Part 1

Are You Being A Christian or Doing Christianity?

My newest mini-book, Surviving Religious Burnout, launches Tuesday, August 4. You can pre-order now on Amazon, Kindle, Apple Books, and Barnes and Noble Nook.

Why I Wrote This Book

I realized over the years a certain theme developed in my writing. Out of that, a mission emerged. I want to help people discover an enjoyable, meaningful Christianity through sharing God’s truth in a refreshing vulnerable way. This book is an expression of that idea.

Working on Being

There is a difference between doing Christianity and being a Christian. Let me explain.

I became a follower of Christ at a young age. I loved going to church, reading the bible, and sharing my faith. As I grew older, so did my boldness and excitement about Jesus. 

My “doer mentality” motivated me to accomplish many good things. It also made it hard to find security in being a Christian without working towards a spiritual goal. Resting, relaxing, and enjoying being a child of God were foreign to me. 

Repeated Burnout

This approach to Christianity caused me to burnout repeatedly. I was always happy to do more than others up to the point I was no longer able to do anything at all. 

Burnout is not typically a symptom of a half-hearted Christian. It takes a committed follower of Christ to perform good works to the point of exhaustion. This is who I want to help with this book.

I hope Surviving Religious Burnout helps you find a more enjoyable, meaningful Christianity.

Reflection:

What do you think causes religious burnout?

Is burnout a sign you do not love God enough or are there other contributing factors?

How do you avoid burnout?

What do you do to get out of burnout once you realized your feeling exhausted in the are of your spiritual life?

I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment or give your answer to these questions on social media when you share this post!

Check out this preview on Amazon:

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A Little Something Extra

Letting Go So That You Can Receive More

Have you ever felt like you were putting too much pressure on yourself or felt bad for not doing more in the area of your faith? Your Christianity should be refreshing not exhausting.  This wasn’t always the case for me.

A Little Something Extra

In Louisiana you often hear the word “Lagniappe” being used. It means “a little something extra.” It’s something that can bring a smile to any cajun’s face as he or she expects to receive an extra piece of boudin or another scoop of jambalaya for dinner. When you get something more than you expected, you are experiencing “lagniappe.”

I used to be good at lagniappe, but not in a good way. I would always try to do a little more than everyone else. Not at work or in school, but in my faith. I would try to outperform – add a little lagniappe to my Christianity. One of the most regrettable examples of this was the first time I almost asked out Amy on a date.

When A Good Thing Becomes a Bad Thing

When we were in college, Amy and I were part of the same young adult ministry. Every year around Christmas time there was a banquet where we would dress up and ask out dates. It was something everyone looked forward to. I knew I wanted to ask Amy, but before I did, I committed myself to filling two rows (about 30 seats) with people I had invited to our monthly youth service.

While I was out trying to build my miniature ministry empire, someone else asked Amy as his date. She said yes, and I was crushed.

Here I was, trying to bring more people to church, and yet God was going to allow someone else to steal my date. Things didn’t seem fair. I was doing more, but getting less. A few days later I filled my rows but my heart was empty. Ok, that is a little dramatic. I filled my rows, but I was still without a date for the banquet. The lesson here is that a good thing can become a bad thing when it is done out of religious duty instead of relationship and joy. Your faith in Jesus should lift burdens from your life not add them.

Receiving God’s More

There are many things God wants to give us that a religious perspective will tell us we do not deserve and cannot have. This type of thinking will have us settling for less than God’s best and cause us to push our dreams off to the side.

God is not in Heaven holding good things back from us because of our lack of perfection. Out of His perfection He wants to give us good things that we couldn’t achieve or don’t deserve on our own. Religion says we have to wait until we are good enough to step up or step out. Grace helps us realize that we will never be good enough anyway. We will always need to rely on God and trust Him.

Lagniappe is supposed to be a good thing. We should enjoy the little something extra that God wants to give us instead of putting up barriers in-between us and what God has called us to do. Many times these are simply just excuses that allow us to avoid the fear of failure or rejection that we will have to face to do anything meaningful for God.

What would you do if you couldn’t fail?

What is God asking you to do?

What areas are you being confined by fear instead of led by faith?

If you would like to explore this topic more check out this book: