Ellen G. White Writings

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Pastoral Ministry, Page 69

Chapter 12—Personal Health

Stress

Ministry is exhausting work—If a minister, during his leisure time, engages in labor in his orchard or garden, shall he deduct that time from his salary? Certainly not, any more than he should put in his time when he is called to work over hours in ministerial labor. Some ministers spend many hours in apparent ease, and it is right that they should rest when they can; for the system could not endure the heavy strain were there no time for letting up. There are hours in the day that call for severe taxation, for which the minister receives no extra salary, and if he chooses to chop wood several hours a day, or work in his garden, it is as much his privilege to do this as to preach. A minister cannot always be preaching and visiting, for this is exhaustive work.—Evangelism, 660.

Rest may be the answer to mental depression—You should labor with care and observe periods of rest. By so doing you will retain your physical and mental vigor and render your labor much more efficient. Brother F, you are a nervous man and move much from impulse. Mental depression influences your labor very much. At times you feel a want of freedom and think it is because others are in darkness or wrong or that something is the matter, you can hardly tell what, and you make a drive somewhere and upon somebody which is liable to do great harm. If you would quiet yourself when in this restless, nervous condition and rest and calmly wait on God and inquire if the trouble is not in yourself, you would save wounding your own soul and wounding the precious cause of God.—Testimonies for the Church 1:622.

Provision should be made to care for ministers who, through overwork in His cause, have become ill—Some provision should be made for the care of ministers and others of God's faithful servants who through exposure or overwork in His cause have become ill and need rest and restoration, or who through age or loss of health are no longer able to bear the burden and heat of the day. Ministers are often appointed to a field of labor that they

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