Who needs to read a book on burning out?! Isn’t burned out just another word for depressed, grumpy, stressed, or lazy?! Won’t God miraculously give Christians the ability to go 110% 25 hours a day, 8 days a week? I used to think the same thing!
The first time I heard about burnout was in a coffee shop in Knoxville. My former pastor was explaining the life-altering moment when he woke up and couldn’t get out of bed. Since then, I attended a seminar on burnout in which he and some other ministers discussed the importance of guarding the spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical aspects of our lives in order to best serve God’s people with the greatest task ever given to mankind—preaching the gospel. In the years following those conversations, I’ve noticed that I’m more prone to living a burnout lifestyle with high stress, little sleep, poor diet, much caffeine, and negligible rest—all in the name of being a go-getter. David Murray’s Reset: Living a Grace-Paced Life in a Burnout Culture was a timely reminder that burnout lurks in the shadows of the American culture.
Murray makes it clear that this book is geared toward pastors and ministers, but he doesn’t limit his message to that audience—nor should he— because all Christians can find themselves in the midst of a major burnout episode. Murray’s Reset plan has 10 repair bays: Reality Check (What’s going on?!), Review (How did I get here?!), Rest (If you’re tired, don’t just pray about, get some sleep!), Re-create (Loosen up, exercise, and have some fun!), Relax (Put your phone down, read a good book, and take some deep breaths!), Re-think (Who are you and what will you do about it?!), Reduce (Stop doing so much, and focus on your priorities!), Refuel (Eat healthy and take care of your brain!), Relate (Nourish your most important relationships.. They’re vital!), and Resurrection (You life will be utterly changed by this reset; this is a small taste of our future resurrection!).
Murray is a witty, engaging, and practical author. The vivid illustrations, explicit applications, precise language, theological foundation, and well-placed theoretical data make Reset a perfect primer for readers impacted by burnout. As a biblical counselor, I appreciate Murray’s consideration of the life impacts and treatments for mental illness. Though I do not agree with every nuance or conclusion he comes to in that section of this book, I will still use Reset for counselees who are battling and dealing with burnout and need a reset. I highly recommend this book for discipleship and accountability for ministers and those who struggle with living a burnout lifestyle.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.