“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28 (NIV)
I can’t count how many times I have thought or said something like, “I’m so tired of dealing with this.” “This” being any number of things spanning from my dysfunctional upbringing to an unruly boss at work. Like most people, my life is filled with things over which I have no control. While I may be aware of that, my lack of acceptance of it is what lies at the root of my weariness. When I don’t accept that I work for someone who I disagree with and try to change the way they think or how they act, I use my energy towards something that cannot be changed by my will. When I behave in a manipulative way to attempt to get a close friend to see the error of their ways, I expend my creative strength foolishly. When I stay up at night worrying about a sick family member, I ignore the need of my body and mind to refuel through sleep.
Instead of thinking I know what is best for someone else or how another person should be acting, I can take my discomforts to Jesus. I can explain my weariness through prayer, by writing a letter to Him or simply sitting quietly in meditation on the subject or person. Then, and this is the difficult part, I must let it go. I remind myself frequently that He is the Higher Power to this person or situation and I am merely one player in His plan. The only person I can change (with His help) is myself. How I react to comments made at work or how much I take personally at home will determine my level of serenity. Whenever worry enters to mull over the issue again, I can call a trusted friend or ask for God to remove that old, worn-out impulse. And, while I allow Jesus to work on the problem, I enable myself to rest in faith instead of using the energy He has given me for purposes other than His.
This seems like such a simple fix, but for me, it was not. I spent so much of my life trying to figure things out, change others to be the way I wanted them to be, and fix myself that letting go of everything in my life to rest in Jesus’s arms was like pushing a thousand pound rock up Mt. Everest. There was no rest at first. At first, there was only gritted teeth and white knuckles as I began to realize that my way was not working and it was time to try something different. And, it took a long time for me to even get to that point. There were many days, weeks, months and years in my walk back to Christ. He used the actions of the people around me to show me the way. He built trust through the comfort and support I received from friends and counselors. He calmed my heart during tumultuous times. He embraced my surrender to His will by lifting the burdens of fixing and worrying.
Over time, I began to feel a new energy coming from within. I was no longer cursing my alarm clock in the morning. I wasn’t falling asleep at my desk anymore. I was able to confront fears like speaking in front of a group of people or being honest about my feelings with a loved one without heart palpitations and sweaty palms. I became more available to the people around me because I wasn’t burning up time and energy fretting about the future and condemning the past.
When I went to Jesus Christ with all of it, I experienced restoration of my soul. All I have to do to keep that wonderful gift is continue to go to Him in faith.
Thank you and thank you again, Jessica.
This is just what I needed as I start out
this challenging weekend. I’ll read and