I am tired. Deep down, to the bone tired.
In fact, that’s just not a big enough word to describe it. By the time I’ve gotten home the past 10 days, I’ve just been too tired to string a coherent thought together. So it’s not that I haven’t missed dropping in here or that there haven’t been topics floating around in my mind to post about – I’m just tired.
Combine that with a 30-something woman who would consider it miraculous to actually sleep through an entire night without awakening several times … and I’m probably verging on the edge of moody too. (Thank goodness I think I’ve held it together with a smile about 90% of the time in the past few days!)
But I do not say any of that to solicit sympathy. Truly, I don’t.
I say it because I know I’m not alone. You may be tired beyond description, too.
It’s not a trait that is unique to any one group: mothers, fathers, singles, full-time employees, homemakers, retired grandparents, volunteers….No matter where we are in life, most of us manage to fill every single waking moment. It’s funny that sometimes we adopt the “grass is greener” mentality in those moments and assume that those who do not fit in the “box” where we place our identity cannot possibly be as busy as us.
Truth is, it doesn’t matter what our “box” is – we’re all playing a juggling act from day-to-day.
The grass isn’t greener on the other side. As a matter of fact, the grass is greener right underneath your feet, wherever you stand.
We just get so busy that we forget to look down and see it. Our heads our spinning with to do lists, commitments, and beloved relationships … and when we neglect ourselves and neglect taking the time to stop and rest, we lose sight of just how precious our “box” truly is.
So what’s the magic answer? How do we escape the tired?
I don’t have one. I know – what a letdown, right? Sometimes we are able to reprioritize or streamline commitments and settle the chaos around us, but sometimes it’s just fact that life is going to be too busy to slow down for awhile.
In those moments … look down at the green grass.
Look at what surrounds you RIGHT WHERE YOU ARE. Chances are, you are surrounded by people you love and who love you. Hopefully, you love what you do every day, regardless of that means. That doesn’t mean it’s perfect or that there aren’t times when you are unhappy. That doesn’t even mean that there won’t be times of deep, trouble-filled sorrows or trials. But even in those times, where are the blessings? Train your mind and heart to seek out the blessings of your life and focus on those.
In those moments … look up at Jesus.
God has you in this very moment for a purpose. And, even better, He will never leave you alone in that moment. He will give you strength and rest. He will provide. In the busiest moments, God is there.
“The Lord will fight for you. You need only be still.” Exodus 14:14
In those moments … find comfort in the knowledge that you are not alone.
It’s perhaps hardest in these moments to step back and let our hearts tune into those around us. It’s much easier to bemoan our own busyness and settle down for a nice little pity party. (It’s true, isn’t it?!)
How much more effort would it really take to send a quick text message to a friend we know who might be feeling the same way – just to tell them they came to mind you said a prayer for them? Not much, right? You could send a text while standing in line, riding on the elevator, waiting for the water to boil for supper. And yet, what a difference just those few words make.
Think about that for a moment. How much does it mean to you when you get those quick, unexpected words of encouragement? Doesn’t it make your heart a little bit lighter? How wonderful the honesty, the genuineness of this kind of friendship!
I say all this, humbled. I’m far too likely to get wrapped up in my own stress and forget to look around me … I pray that God will help me move beyond the short-sightedness and allow me to be a better encourager, to remember those blessings, and to trust that He has me cradled in His strong, loving hands.
So instead of focusing tonight on my own to do list, worries, or weariness, I choose differently. Tonight, I’m praying for you. May God grant you a night of deeply refreshing rest, and may you be reminded in every moment of tomorrow that He walks beside you, equipping you with every single thing you need for your journey.