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A Little Respite

a short period of rest or relief from something difficult or unpleasant.


“Your brain is broken,” said my neurologist. While concerned, I didn’t despair at his evaluation. In truth, I was somewhat relieved. For more than three months I had been suffering from continual lightheadedness, periodic headaches, and a bit of fatigue here and there. The road to the neurologist had crossed paths with several different medical professionals, but now I felt I had arrived at an answer that both corroborated my condition and the narrative that produced it. The diagnosis was essentially an anxiety-disorder where my brain keeps telling my body to stress even though I am not consciously stressed about anything in particular. It’s frustrating, demoralizing, and flat-out no fun.

It’s something I’ve been completely open about with the guys I lead alongside at CCCC. I’ve no need to hide it. I’m not Superman but a limited creature who struggles with the brokenness of sin. I couldn’t avoid my illness if I wanted to. My condition so debilitated me at times that they would encourage me to go home. Nothing like someone telling you, “Yancey, you look horrible! My goodness, go home and get to bed.” to reaffirm you’ve really got a problem. I appreciated their honesty and concern. It also motivated them to encourage me to take a leave of absence for my mental health.

So, beginning this last Monday on the kind recommendation of our elders, I am taking off 30 days from any and all responsibilities at CCCC (no email, no phone, no preaching, etc.) in the hopes the month-long respite will be catalytic for my continuing mental rehabilitation. Do I like this? Not really. I love what I do. I love who I work with. I love CCCC in general. Do I need this? Probably. Only time will tell. I’ve never taken off 30 days straight. It will likely drive me crazy but, after hearing counsel from friends who’ve suffered from stress-related issues and professionals who deal with them, this seems a prudent step to take. You should know, I find myself in better health than even a month ago. My symptoms, instead of being ever-present in some form or fashion, now come and go with decreasing frequency and intensity. Here’s to hoping (and praying) this little respite will speed up the recovery process.

I’m also going to be taking a respite from social media over the next thirty days. So, if you don’t hear from me, know that I’ll be trying to rest somewhere, thankful for my church, and seeking the grace of Christ in it all.


Picture of Yancey Arrington
Dr. Yancey C. Arrington is an eighth generation Texan, Acts 29 Network and Houston Church Planting Network fan, and Teaching Pastor at Clear Creek Community Church in the Bay Area of Houston. He is also author of Preaching That Moves People and TAP: Defeating the Sins That Defeat You, and periodically writes for Acts 29 and The Gospel Coalition.

4 thoughts on “A Little Respite”

  1. Well, this is a relief and I can 100% understand what you’re going through. Anxiety/stress is a strange thing and creeps up on you without you even knowing. Been there, done that. You are in my prayers and I’m so happy you’re getting this time to rest. Now DO IT. 😉

    I’ve included my email address here but am out of the country (getting MY rest in the middle of nowhere)…so cannot access my email. Grrr. Something about not being in the U.S. But I CAN get on Facebook and the hubby’s email.

    I love your guts and am praying for your broken brain 🙂


  2. Carolyn Burton

    I will pray daily for your good health to return, and for your family.
    I would like for you to know that your teachings of God’s word brought me to accept Jesus Christ as my Saviour.
    God Bless you Yancey.

    Carolyn Burton

  3. thank you for setting the best of examples! One must take care of oneself before they can be of help to others! Prayers & love for you & family!

  4. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers, not just for this much needed, much earned respite, but for holding you up always – knowing that your awesome leadership must weigh heavily on your entire being. Rest, dear friend, and come back to us renewed. In the meantime, please know that those of us who you have taught, guided, and lead to learn how to live closer to Christ will joyfully (if not as expertly) help carry the weight for a season. You are dearly loved…

    Lila Macaluso

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