Time Out: A Job or a Lifestyle?

Topic / Time Out

Time Out (by Jerry Schmoyer)

Getting paid to do what you love is a real privilege and blessing. Every once in awhile I awaken to my own awesome opportunity of being able to spend my time serving God while watching Him work and receive a salary for it. I feel as though I should be paying others for this great opportunity! Being a pastor moves me deeply and I am humbled and inspired to give God my very best every day.

But, at times, I admit I see my job as a merely a job; a burden to be worn; something I am stuck doing to pay the bills at home. Sometimes this happens because I get discouraged during tough times, or because I’ve drifted in my own personal walk with the Lord. It can also happen because I get too busy doing too many things. Other times it is a hobby that diverts my focus, or administrative work that becomes cumbersome. There are many things which are fine in themselves, but can distract me from the main job.

In 2 Timothy 2:3-7 Paul uses the example of a soldier to explain the difference between a job and a lifestyle. A soldier’s first loyalty must be to his commanding officer. He can not be so involved in civilian matters that they affect his availability or commitment to his leader. He must be ready and available to do whatever and to go wherever, at any moment’s notice. In life, enjoying things outside of work is good, but when those things interfere with serving the Lord, then those things are out of place. They can become an idol, and we all know what God thinks of idols!

2 Timothy 2:3-7, “Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs — he wants to please his commanding officer. Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules. The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.”

1 John 5:21, “Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.”


  • What is ministry to you, a job or a lifestyle?
  • If it is just a job, what must you do to change that?
  • What most distracts you from your ministry?
  • What must you do to keep your focus where it needs to be?


Jerry Schmoyer has been a minister in Pennsylvania for over 25 years and has worked with teenagers for 14 years, ever since I became one myself. He authors the weekly Time Out series here at Life in Student Ministry in hopes to spiritually refresh your soul as you continually pour so much of yourself into students. God bless!

Posted on April 6, 2008

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