I was having a conversation with a friend last week. And as you do when chatting we talked about everything.
So I asked her what her plans were for Sunday.
My friend proceeded to tell me how she was going to have a very lazy day, watch TV and spend time alone with God.
I have to say at that moment I was envious of her plans and told her so.
Her reply to me was that I had chosen to have a busy life. And at any time I could choose to cease my running.
My week seems to consist of running around at church doing various jobs.
At one stage I had to inform the minister's wife that just because there was a job to be done, did not mean I needed to do it.
But my thoughts these past few days have been consumed with this one question.
Have I chosen the busy church life I have, or has God chosen it for me?
Did I choose to run the Sunday school, to lead in worship, to help with the Christianity explored to teach scripture to the girls brigade etc?
For if as I believe, God has chosen me to do this work, then when I am weary I have a purpose and a reason to struggle on. I know I am doing as my God commanded me, and I know he will give me strength to get through the valleys I face.
But if on the other hand I have chosen this busy life for myself, then God is surely not in it? And to be truthful I might as well quit now and go and sit at the back of the church, as do something that is not of HIM.
And believe me, at this moment that is exactly what I want to do.
I do say no to things. In fact I say no more often than I say yes.
Ach I don't know! It's January, its dark and its cold. Maybe im just tired!
Or maybe, just maybe, if there is no joy, there is no calling?
All I know is that im confused.
So until I know what He wants me to do . I intend to hold onto the promise found for me in Psalm 32 v 8: I will Instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go; I will guide thee with mine eye.
Bethy praise God, for your desire to do our Lord's work is an awesome blessing. The love you recieve from your work is a reward that can not be achieved in any other way. This reminds me of two other sisters of mine. Seems our Lord had come to visit them. One spent her day cleaning and cooking and perparing a feast for our Lord while the other went about worshiping Him. Some of us are meant for certain things others are meant for something completely different. That is how he made us. Please do not stop your busy works, the are acheiving greatly what our Lord needs. Please don't be confused.
Love Your Brother in light,
Stay the path God has set you upon. He is our strength and comfort!!
With all the jobs I do- at times I feel as you do now , and this is what I ask myself - What would I be doing if not this? answer is usually nothing. Does it mean I praise God more? or less? Would I spend more quality time with Him just because I stop doing something that glorifies Him? After that question - does it even make sense to stop? I usually end with prayer and thanksgiving after answering those questions because the answers, to me, are so very obvious.
The work you do glorifies Him. Inspires and encourages others.
If you want a time of rest on Sundays ask Him for it.
& praying for you
Dearest Bethy - even the Lord Himself needed to go to quiet places for renewal and time with His Father. Your life sounds like mine up until about 2 years ago. Although I said no to some things, I took up the slack because others refused and things like Vacation Bible School would never have happened if a small handful of others and myself had not said yes. Burnout happens frequently and we must give our tired minds and body attention so that we can keep going.
I've often said to my husband during my burnout times, that in the life of a believer, there is no such thing as retirement. If all fails in body, the mind can keep going in prayer for those coming up behind us in the work.
I'll pray today, Bethy, that you find strength and encouragement this week through the Word and through others who love and appreciate you. We all need edification and fellowship to help us re-focus.
Thanks for sharing a heart-felt circumstance in your life!
Dearest Bethy - even the Lord Jesus Himself needed to find quiet places for renewal and strength when He talked with His Father. Burnout happens frequently because a few seem to be the only one's willing to take up the slack that a majority of other believers for whatever reason will not or can not do. Your life sounds like mine did up until a few years ago. Although I said "no" to some things, a small handful of others and myself took on way to much responsibility because others would or could not.
I used to tell my husband that although I was weary to the bone, in my view, there is no retirement for the Christian. When our body fails, our minds hopefully can remain active in prayer. But it is crucial to try to take some time off. I learned a while ago that when I took on any responsiblity in the church, I told the church board that I must have a replacement at least one weekend every three months. It helped immensely.
Bethy, I will pray for you today that you find strength and encouragement from the Lord. Try to seek a quiet place and time for yourself. Do as Jesus did and you will find a better way to re-focus and renew.
Certainly there aren't enough doers of the faith. However, I feel you have a valid question when you ask if these are jobs you chose for yourself or God chose for you. Doing just for the sake of doing is as you said, not good. I pray that the Lord will show you in what ways He wants to you use you.
Hey bethy! what a good question you ask, and believe me it's one I've asked myself many many times. My mentor has taught me a few things over the years to look for, so I share them with you.
First of all, let me say thank you for serving our Lord and Savior. Too many people go to church simply for what it does for them, rather than seeing any responsibility they have to serve.
The first thing my mentor has taught me about serving is that I should always pray before answering. And not an arrow prayer, but to take a day and night at least to pray for it. When asked to serve, "Let me pray about that before I say yes or no" is a perfectly acceptable response! Put your question before the Lord in prayer, open your Bible. Tell Him, "Lord this is something I think I'd like to do, but I don't know how I possibly can"
Secondly, just because there is a need doesn't mean that you are the one to fill it. In fact, sometimes an unfulfilled service area is used to convict the one God is calling to fill it. For example, if they ask you to teach the first grade because there is no teacher and you do not believe you have been called to do it, there's nothing like an empty first grade class to convict the one God is asking to do it.
As Debbie says, even Jesus had to get away for time with the Lord. If you're too busy to pray and have a good quiet time with Him, then satan has won a victory.
You may be doing the work God has called you to BUT doing it in your own strength. For one as gifted as you are, it is very easy to suck it up and just do it in your own strength and wisdom and power rather than relying on God to help you.
Ask the Lord to show you if there's an obligation you need to release. Often people use busy-ness as a coping mechanism for unresolved hurts (ask me how I know this ). Make sure you're not doing this.
I am starting to remember to say thanks. So for all your comments I truly thankyou:
Bubba,alight and lily thankyou for your encouragment
Debbie and WB I do need to spend more time in prayer and seek his will not mine.
Gracie hhmmmm, you have no idea how close to the truth you are in one of your comments, in fact in more than one. So I am truly grateful that you have shared what you were taught.
I am eternally grateful for the wisdom shared here, and give thanks for each of you.
dear bethy, I am not pointing the finger one way or the other but your blog reminded me of something I heard from a minister. He said that he was in a space where he was very tired and very busy. He talked to God about it and God told him that he wasn't tired from what he (God) had told him to do, it was all the other things he had chosed to do himself! A good blog giving me cause to reflect a great deal. oh, hang on a minute...
Kiwi, you are right, I need to be a better steward of my time I think.
AJ... when will I ever learn girl?????
God keep you both