I picked this book up, because several of the blogs I read/follow mentioned it and most said it is a must read for all in ministry.
I, being a pastor was intrigued by the title and concept, which is all about overcoming (or not even falling) into burn out within ministry. As Pastors (or lay people, or just as believers) we are all in a battle that Satan doesn’t want us to win. He takes us out when and where he can. A HUGE aspect of his schemes is for certain the burn out epidemic.
In this book, Anne Jackson authentically shares her journey of ministry woes, where she too fell prey to Mad Church Disease (AKA Burnout). I immediately connected with Anne in a way I’ve related to only a few people, because I too am a PK (Pastor’s Kid). I automatically felt like she knew what I’ve gone through, so what she was going to say was right on.
I wasn’t disappointed either. Very early, she shares how her father was treated by the board of one church, where they were constantly trying to fire him…which in the end, it worked. This happened to my dad as well. The church system we were in then was the old school way of doing things. The church would pay your salary not based off of a specific “salary”, but based off of performance (if we’re honest). If you were doing good, the offering went up. If they didn’t like you (for whatever reason) the offering went down. The church tried to starve out our family by not giving to the offering. It was a rough time.
All that to say: I connected with Anne and understood where she was coming from. This happens very little with authors, and myself but I really enjoyed that aspect of reading Mad Church Disease.
The book is very well written and gives great advice, wisdom and personal testament on how to AVOID and OVERCOME burnout. Her symptoms checks helped me see that although I didn’t think I was suffering from Mad Church Disease…I had a bit of a “cough”. This book is definitely a must read for ministers…whether or not you feel you are burned out. It gives great tactics in which to avoid burnout…which are massively important!
You will laugh, maybe cry a bit but you will definitely walk away with something to hold onto. God is a good God and desires us to lean on Him, not ourselves in this battle. This book is a GREAT reminder of that fact. Thanks Anne.