The True Vine

 In Sermons, Teachings

JR. Forasteros - April 22, 2018

The Good Shepherd

Monday Messiah

Karl Marx famously claimed that religion was the ‘opiate of the masses’. He meant what we know – religion can be a powerful means of controlling people. This was as true in Jesus’ day as it is in ours. How can we learn to spot religious manipulation? And what tools do we have available to us to learn to hear the voice of the Good Shepherd, Jesus himself?

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This message was written and delivered by Tommy Cash

I have been asked several times, How?  How do I go to school full time, raise 3 kids, work full time, volunteer at the church, be a brother, a husband, and a functioning person in society. People get mesmerized and they think I have a secret system, magic tool, or I know something that they don’t. As I smile at them and try to be kind and encourage them, the whole time though I am thinking I am actually dying inside. If they only knew how burnt out, tired, and exhausted I am.

The thing is I know productivity, I train in productivity, and I maximize productivity. I am somewhat of an expert in this category, I am able to take things apart and find ways, options, and ideas on how to improve and maximize. How to eliminate free space, off time, or downtime. I am a professional productivity consultant. I’ve personally been guilty of telling people they are not productive and they need to fill their time better.

However, even though this has been one of the most productive years of my life, this past year has also been one of the hardest, most exhausting, and stressful years in my life. Managing everything I had going on to say the least was overwhelming. I have became a fine tuned employee, husband, father, and volunteer, but I now live in burn out. 

I’m not alone… a study from Statista shows that 1 in 5 adults is experiencing burnout or someone directly linked to them is experiencing it.

Burn out is something we all know. Exhaustion, depersonalization, never being satisfied with performance. Feeling like all the work we do is not enough, not good enough, or even overwhelming us. We spend a lot of our time on trying to avoid it, trying to prevent it, or even try to stop it.

We know we can’t just always go, go, go. But how can we afford to take a break?

We have a suspicion that spirituality is an answer – mindfulness and meditation are new buzzwords. But in our overcrowded schedules, God is the first thing to go. The first things we cut are prayer, church, c group, rest, quiet time. Or is that just me?

We live in a world of factories, so no wonder ‘productivity’ is a value – that’s what a good factory does. But humans aren’t machines. We’re organic. So maybe we should worry less about being productive and ask how we can be FRUITFUL. Maybe there’s something in recognizing we’re not machines that can run 24/7/365 that can bring us life.

Join us Sunday as we learn how Jesus invites us to stay with him and find life.

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