The Spiritual Leader's Guide to Self-Care

by Rochelle Melander, Harold Eppley. The Alban Institute, 2002.

"Self-care means living the life God has intended for you," the authors state in the preface of the book. When spiritual leaders are living that life, they are renewed and energetic. In addition, they have a vision—both for their own lives and for the lives of those to whom they minister. However, it is all too easy to lose track of that vision and neglect our relationships with God, others, and ourselves.

But this is not another book prescribing rest for the worn-out leader. Rather, this is a 52-week book that invites readers to (1) explore their own attitudes toward their life vision, work habits, and relationships; and (2) take a serious look at how they treat themselves physically, spiritually, and intellectually. Each week explores a different theme and gives readers a chance to connect with themselves, others, and God. As the weeks progress, readers will find themselves making some minor adjustments to some areas of their lives and adopting completely new patterns in others.

This book challenges pastors and lay leaders to look at how they care for themselves. It also offers an easy-to-follow weekly format to help leaders stay connected with God while caring for a congregation.