I hate gnats.
I particularly hate the gnats called the no-see-ums or sandflies. They are present certain months of the year on the beach. Though almost invisible to the naked eye, they can pack a powerful sting.
All who serve in vocational ministry have gnats. They come with the call. They are the critics. They are those who always have a better way to do things. They are the ones who expect you to visit them regularly. They are the ones who always speak up in a business meeting, always negatively.
They won’t ever go away. So you can either leave ministry because of them, or you can deal with them. Here are seven ways you can deal with gnats.
1. Realize gnats are gnats. They are troublesome, at times demoralizing, but never fatal. Well, they are not fatal unless you treat them like the larger problem they are not.
2. Look beyond the gnat moments. If you are a pastor or church staff leader, you will have gnats. You will have those who seem to constantly bug you (pun intended). But the issue almost always goes away. You will look back on those gnat moments and wonder why you acted like it was a major crisis.
3. Focus on those things that really matter. If you focus on the gnats, they can take you down. If you focus on those things God has called you to do, you will forget about the gnats.
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Dr. Thom Rainer is president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention.