Monday, October 01, 2012

Tired? Worn out? Burned out?

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”  Matthew 11:28-30 (The Message)

Sometimes when I'm really tired, I go back to the words of Jesus in Matthew 11.  It's an invitation that I often hear Him whisper in my ears, "if you are tired, come to me..."  The truth is that coming to Jesus when we are tired, worn out, or even burned out is not always the natural leaning of our hearts. Very often, men and women turn to other things in their attempt to "find rest".  Pornography, TV, food, friends, drinks, affairs...  but they get trapped in even deeper "restlessness".

Though being in full time ministry (church work) is very fulfilling and rewarding, it can also be very exhausting.  The emotions of hearing people's broken stories, the hours of planning, investing in new leaders, the many pressures that come with a fast-growth church culture, and even the excitement of watching God transform lives... it can suck the energy out of you.

Jesus didn't guarantee a painless life.  He didn't say serving Him would be easy.  He didn't promise a life with no struggles.  Sometimes we need to remember that.  What He did promise though is that
He would always be there.  He would walk with us in the journey.  He would fill our hearts with joy (un-circumstantial inner happiness) and peace beyond our understanding.

So He says, "if you are tired, come to me" - don't go to other things that will leave you empty.  I have learned to love this part of my relationship with God.  The incredible feeling of resting in Him.  The joy of sensing Him lift my burdens. The peace that He floods into my heart when I just come.  It's beyond explanation.  I often come to Him speechless, worn out, and literally at the end of myself.  But EVERY-TIME a miracle happens.  He shows up.  In my weakness, He is made strong.  He renews my strength.  He gives me rest.

Try coming to Jesus next time you're at the end of yourself and watch Him meet with you and fill your heart.

"Come close to God, and God will come close to you" James 4:8 NLT
Post a Comment