Tired. That word alone is a word we ALL can relate to. At one time or another (or every day), we are tired. The definition of tired is weary, exhausted, fatigued – being weary suggests a physical or mental condition in which our energy is just plain gone. That is the tired I want to talk about, the kind that requires is to sit awhile.
Psalms talks a lot about David’s weariness. I am so glad he opened his heart and shared that – in all its vulnerability and raw honesty – because the past couple of years, I have been weary. I have felt so tired that I felt almost dysfunctional. And NOT so much physically as much as mentally.
Psalm 119:28 says, “My soul is weary with sorrow…” AH. Well, there is ONE reason for mental exhaustion. Sorrow. Sorrow drains you right down to the pit of your soul. Has sorrow ever left you feeling too tired to even talk? Or to dream. To think. Or to plan. To wonder. Or to hope. To just live your life in general. It is that feeling of when too much is just, too much. You are done. You are like that overcooked thanksgiving turkey that was left in the oven too long, with nothing to offer at the thanksgiving table. Overcooked. Overdone. And overwhelmed. Just at the end. In a 21st century cultural phrase – you “got nothin’”.
THAT is a scary place to find yourself because you feel like you are too tired to even care that you are too tired to even care. Yes, that is how I meant to say it.
Rather than dwelling any further on the exhaustion of our soul, let’s instead find out what exactly fixes this! Please David of the Psalms – tell us how you got past your weary soul.
Ah, the MOST familiar Psalm most everyone recognizes or knows, is Psalms 23. THERE lies the answer in all its simplicity and complexity. “The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, leads me beside quiet waters, He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for His name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for You are with me. Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”
The words that stand out to me personally are – He leads me beside still waters – and, refreshes my soul. What does this look like to me? Still waters are just that – they are still. They are NOT moving or consumed with motion. Our part is to go lay beside them. Sometimes I just need that so bad – just to feel the stillness and the peace OF that stillness. I ONLY find it in Jesus. I have searched other places and to no avail.
It is because Jesus offers a peace the world can NOT give, but also can NOT take away. BAM! He refreshes me with that infilling of peace and stillness – the breath comes back into my soul, the lights come back on, the sun rises, the birds start singing – HE RESTORES MY SOUL. Psalm 46:10 tells us what is OUR part in this – “Be still and KNOW that I am God.” Be still means to cease striving. Just stop. Just be. You’re too weary to do anything anyway, so just fall into the arms of Jesus. Like a freefall into a safe place that only bids you come. He says, “ I will satisfy the weary soul, and every languishing soul I will replenish.” (Jeremiah 31:25)
Stop & Sit Awhile
In conclusion, it seems hard to stop when you are in full motion of this life journey – maybe the weary is kind of a sign from our soul, just letting us know we need to “stop and sit awhile”.
“But those who hope in the Lord will RENEW their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and NOT GROW WEARY; they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31) We will grow weary because we are human, but we CAN get through to the other side as we find our strength in God. After the weariness passes (because it WILL) we will find ourselves stronger than ever IF we allowed God to be our rest and our safe place to recover. Finally, we WILL soar like eagles.