I come from a denomination that had a very important tradition of asking one another in small group gatherings "how is it with your soul?" I think we need to reclaim the time and space to honestly answer that questions - especially as pastors. How is it really with our souls?
Far too many pastors I know neglect their own spiritual life as they care for the spirituality of others. The only devotional life they have to speak of revolves around preparing for Sunday's sermon and the only time they pray is when they are asked to do so publicly. When our spiritual lives are languishing as pastors, how can we be expected to lead others deeper in their relationship with God?
Like exercise, I don't have a set devotionally schedule. The generally gist is doing a structured reading in the morning - but the time varies depending on the day, and a personal scripture reading in the evening. Currently, I am using A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals in the morning which has a guided time of prayer and singing, a psalter reading, and a new testament and old testament reading. I usually change the book I use for structured devotional time once a year, but for the time being I have been using this for two consecutive years because I really like it. Then in the evening I read one chapter from the Hebrew Scriptures and one chapter from the New Testament.
We all need to find what works for us personally in terms of spiritual growth - we are all different so different types of readings appeal to us - but we each need to be doing something to tend to our own souls so that we can tend to others without our cups running spiritually dry.
Sabbatical Growth Plan
3 weeks ago