Dry seasons…we’ve all been there, and for a variety of reasons. And over the course of 26 years in youth ministry, I have found myself in quite a few, and for a variety of reasons. Here are some random thoughts about getting through the next one that comes along.
- Try to identify the cause. Sometimes dry seasons just happen…for no apparent reason. But often times they are caused by a specific event or triggered by certain patterns of ministry. For example, I almost always find myself in a dry season when I have too many things on my plate that I’m directly responsible for. A sense of being too busy or juggling too many plates is almost guaranteed to trigger a dry season for me.
- Notice I said “getting through”, not “getting over”. I think it’s a mistake to try to simply “get over” something. Dry seasons are a great opportunity to see if God is trying to get your attention, to see if there is something to be learned, adjusted or addressed personally. And if we try too quickly to simply “get over” it, we miss the power of journeying “through” it.
- Spend some time doing stuff that charges you up! I’m shocked at how often I find myself in the middle of a dry season and simultaneously find myself neglecting some of the most basic things that bring me joy and energy! When I’m dry, I have a tendency to quit exercising, quit calling my friends to go see a late-night movie, and quit being spontaneous with my family. Those are three things I love the most, but I often do less of them in a dry season when I would probably benefit from doing them more.
- Get spiritual…but don’t go overboard. Hopefully you get my heart on this one. Part of getting through a dry season is spending time with the Father, seeking his heart and asking him to search yours. But just because you are going through a dry season doesn’t necessarily mean there is something deep and dark wrong with your soul. It doesn’t mean there is something life changing that will only be discovered through prayer. It does’t mean you can somehow quicken your way through the journey by spending an extra 10-minutes a day in solitude. It may mean all of those things…but it may not.
There’s no formula for navigating the next dry season you find yourself in, but those are some things that have helped me. Anybody willing to share a tip or two from your own experiences?
On The Journey With You,