summer break

Take a Break!

You need a break. Your volunteers need a break. God took a break. He even made it a law and called it Sabbath. Jesus modeled this same concept, getting away to be with the Father to renew His soul, recenter and stay in step with His will time and again.

How can we take breaks that add not only to our health, but to that of our volunteers and overall ministry? How can we take advantage of the annual cultural realities of summer and Christmas breaks when a large portion of people take vacations and are a little bit “checked out” of normal routines?

This is where the 5R Strategy can help you and your team take full advantage of taking a break! Here are the nuts and bolts of the 5R Strategy:

REST- We all need it and it’s a


During this scheduled time leaders and teams should celebrate the fact that little to nothing is being done by anyone. Plan for it. Put it on the calendar. REST is the thing that makes all the other things even possible! Get excited about it! It flows with the rhythm of western culture to take advantage of this over the summer and then around the New Year. Call it a “power pause” or an “off-season.” All the best teams have one.

Note: Not everyone wants, needs or even can take a break. Some basic functions simply must go on. Be intentional about communicating with those serving these needs. How can they get a break and their function continue to go forward in a healthy way?

RETHINK – We all need a fresh


“If you’re always working in it, you can’t work on it.” (Andy Stanley)

It helps to get away in order to see things clearly and creatively. Do this both individually and as a team, preferably off-site. Take a close look and ask the tough questions that will lead to being and doing better in your area. Another word for this is REVIEW. It’s simply asking the question, “How can we make it better?”

REWORK – It only works when

we are working it.

Times change. Things change. Culture changes. We better change our methods accordingly. While staying true to timeless principles and our vision/values, we must meet the culture we are trying to reach and people we are trying to serve where they are at. And, these are all moving targets! CHANGE IS INEVITABLE. IT WILL EITHER HAPPEN TO YOU OR THROUGH YOU. How can we rework our methods to better connect with and serve those we are trying to reach?

RECRUIT – Expanding our teams

expands our influence!

Healthy teams are actively mentoring new members and revolving them in a purposed way. Why? Because disciples make disciples and servants make servants! Besides, some active positions will need filled, old positions removed and new positions added.

The 5-R Break will allow for this to be done in a thoughtful way. Who are you investing in? How are they learning and growing?

RELAUNCH – We all need new


Whether it’s like a “Grand Reopening” or a more simple, understated re-start, there’s just something good about beginning again that brings a sense of excitement and momentum to everyone! Plan, prepare, promote and then relaunch it together!

There’s one more BONUS “R” to add that is central to all the others, RELATIONSHIP.

Healthy RELATIONSHIPS are at

the center of great teams.

Not only should every strategic step in the strategy focus on this, but if there are unhealthy relationships, there is now time to “go there” and work it out. Are all relationships good? Then, use this time for some extra team bonding!

Last but not least is PRAYER!

This is vital to the 5R Strategy. Nothing will take the place of being in step with the Holy Spirit and His unique leading for your life and the team culture you influence, putting the right people in the right places for the right season.

5R Summary – Do all teams need to go through each step each time? 

No, probably not. However, most will need to focus on a few of the steps that will be strategic to their team health in their area of service before moving forward again with a sense of renewed energy and direction.

It’s time for you and your team to

take a much needed, much

deserved and strategic break!