18 04 2012

Bill Hybels, pastor of Willow Creek Community Church in suburban Chicago—one of the nation’s largest, recalls a time in the late 1980’s when the church was experiencing unbelievable growth.  This growth taxed him and his staff in a big way.

Eventually Bill reached a breaking point.  Burned out.   Letting fly on his colleagues in an unprofessional and inexcusable way.  He needed help.

He’d been urged by friends to get counseling.  Ego caused him to balk at this until he could take no more.  He went to a counselor.

One of the first questions his counselor asked was, “Bill, what do you do for relaxation?”

“That’s easy.  Nothing.”

“This has to change.”

He urged Bill to find an outlet.  Recreation.

A hobby.

As a younger man, Bill loved sailing.  But, worried about the disapproval of parishioners, he didn’t pursue it.  What will people think if their pastor buys a sailboat?

He decided to let the critics think what they may and bought an old sailboat.  He remodeled it and made it seaworthy.  Then he formed a sailing team and entered regattas.

It has been a godsend for him and he’s had the time of his life.

Everyone needs a hobby.  I’m a musician and an audiophile, so mine happens to be collecting records.  33&1/3 vinyl albums.  The sound is better.  The artwork is outstanding.  And I can get treasures on the cheap.  It is quintessentially cool.

I’ve just begun a rather long vacation, the longest in years.  I plan to indulge my hobby as I hit thrift stores and some record stores as well.  I have a few in my sights (“From Genesis to Revelation” by Genesis and “The Geese and the Ghost” by Anthony Phillips).  It is an adventure.  Recent acquisitions: “Dreamboat Annie” by Heart and “The Rose” Original Soundtrack to the Motion Picture

How do you relax?  Tell us about your hobbies.


Image Credit




8 responses

18 04 2012
Kristin Barton Cuthriell

This is so important. Too often, those in the helping fields; clergy, counselors, parents… are so busy caring for everyone else that their own health suffers. As therapists, we are often offered workshops on compassion fatigue. What is one thing that is usually discussed and taught? You guessed it, relaxation techniques and the importance of enjoyable hobbies. Self- care is not synonymous with self- absorption. Great post!

18 04 2012
Christian Fahey

These are really important thoughts, Kristin. Thank you. As a health care professional, I’m sure you’ve seen the dangers of not “unstringing the bow” in a very real way. Thanks for sharing and reading!

18 04 2012
David Kanigan

Dreamboat Annie…of course!

18 04 2012
Christian Fahey

Yes! And in great condition for only $.79 Love it!

18 04 2012
LaDona's Music Studio

I’ve got that one on vinyl as well – when I listened to “heavy” rock ‘n’ roll!

19 04 2012
Christian Fahey

LOL Some things an old rocker from the 70’s just can’t resist. Especially for $.79!

18 04 2012
LaDona's Music Studio

But you asked about hobbies. Does running count as a hobby? I love it, I do it most days, it’s the best stress reliever…
Reading, attending concerts (mostly just classical these days), blogging and reading other blogs…
BTW, Bill Hybels is preaching in our church sometime in the next few months. Looking forward to that.

19 04 2012
Christian Fahey

Running? Of course. Cool about Bill Hybels. He’s a remarkably disciplined man and has been something of a role model for me. Thanks for reading!

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