So often people ask us how we are and we quickly answer in passing that we are good. They really don’t care about how you actually are, so we move on. But what if we were to stop and actually ask ourselves how we are doing?
What if instead of just passing over the question we were to stop and check our hearts for a minute. How would it look like if we really thought about how our relationship with God was going… what if we were honest? I wonder if instead of protecting ourself from the pain that could come from opening up, if we embraced it and would we began to heal?
We Live in a World Where Burnout is the Normal
There was a lot of brokenness in 2020. And it is spilling into 2021. Our lives can be full and crazy. We are constantly adjusting plans and regrouping. We’re rolling with the punches. We’re moving fast and so often we are just trying to keep up. We are trying to hold it all together.
You’re supposed to work hard, be social, go to the gym every day, cook home-cooked meals, have the perfect clean home, fresh-baked bread in the oven, make sure your inbox stays at zero… all while wearing a cape and heels.
And the worst part is that it seems like everyone else manages to do it all effortlessly. It’s easy to feel like you are dropping the ball at every turn.
I would bet if we were honest with how we actually are so many would say that they are worn out, tired, and can’t keep running at this pace. Our hearts ached and long for rest and to be renewed, but the reality of slowing down seems impossible. The thought of allowing our weakness to show is petrifying.
I’ve been reading through Lineage of Grace. It is the five stories of these women in the Bible: Tamara, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and Mary. These women have hard lives and powerful stories… These are strong women. And God used them to ultimately bring Jesus. As I’m reading through their stories, I desire to have strength like theirs. Strength that endures true hardships in life. They stay faithful to God through it all and in the midst of a dark and broken world, there are glimmers of hope and life.
The last few months have been tiring. The list of to-dos only grows and grows like wildflowers after a rainstorm. And I can’t help but wonder how in the world were these women able to be so strong… It seems like the even the smallest things can take us down, how were they able to endure the terrible things that happened to them?
But God Offers Rest in the Midst of Crazy Seasons
That’s when I felt God say to me… You don’t need to be strong, I am. He doesn’t tell you to pull it all together, have another cup of coffee, and figure it out. He gives rest.
It’s a broken world, full of broken people, and broken people break things… we can’t do it on our own it’s exhausting, but through our brokenness, God’s strength is shown.
These women in the bible were average people. They had their own sin. They were weak. But they trusted God and His strength. And He blessed them for it.
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” – Matthew 11:28
There is so much freedom in that. Often times we feel like we need to hold it all together and make sure everything looks perfect. But we are crumbling and falling apart from the inside out. Some of these heavy burdens we have been carrying for too long.
And that’s the joy and the freedom of the cross. Jesus sees our brokenness and our sin. He knows our hearts and the things that make them break like fragile glass. Jesus already knows what we are carrying around, and that it is just too heavy. He knows you can’t do it on your own.
We’re not perfect. We’re human and sinful. We aren’t capable of ever saving ourselves. We are dead in sin.
And Jesus still loves us and called us his beloved. Jesus goes out of his way to see the broken, the hurt, the vulnerable. Jesus loved us when we were most broken, sinful, and unclean.
And the reality of that is overwhelming. Life is too hard to do it by yourself. Lean on Jesus. Rest. He gives sleep to his beloved.
“Jesus turned and saw her. ‘Have courage, daughter,’ he said. ‘Your faith has saved you.’ And the woman was made well from that moment.” Matthew 9:22
There is healing and hope in this reality. Freedom to show up real, show up authentically and be fully ourselves.
And I can’t thank Jesus enough this Easter. If you feel like you are worn out and tired, your sin is too heavy to carry, I would encourage you to lean into Jesus and just begin to see the peace and true life that only He gives.