Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28-30
Forgetfulness is one of my spiritual gifts. I lose track of my keys and wallet on the regular. My wife knows without a list in my hand to jog my memory, I’d wander around the grocery store aimlessly. Before the invention of Facebook, it was a forgone conclusion that I would forget loved ones’ birthdays. My uncanny ability to be absentminded gets me in trouble especially during the holidays – which reminds me, I forgot to water my Christmas tree… again.
My neglect has taken its toll on our tree. Rather than evergreen, it is a pitiful shade of semi-brown. The branches are sagging. The amount of dry pine needles scattered around its trunk are warning signs that it’s screaming out for water. The tree is no longer a thing of beauty; it’s now a fire hazard.
Neglecting to take notice of a Christmas tree is one thing, but failing to slow down and examine our energy levels can cause greater damage than we care to admit. A tree can be replaced, our hearts cannot. Instead of ending the year strong, many of us limp to the finish line.
Rather than plow on through or grin and bear it, God commands us to rest and to trust. He urges us to pay attention to our hearts because out of it everything flows.
There are warning signs to a thirsty tree. Likewise, the heart will let us know when it can no longer run on empty. We get angrier quicker. We disengage and disconnect from the world around us. We indulge in behaviors we regret later. We grow cynical and jaded. We use people rather than connect with them. We grow indifferent.
Are these actions making an appearance in your life? If so, pay attention. Don’t forget to care for yourself – refresh, replenish and recharge. Make your heart a priority. This isn’t a selfish act. In fact, self-care is one of the most selfless acts you can do.
The only way you can give yourself away is ensuring there is something left to give.
How would you describe your current energy level? Is your energy tank depleted or full?
Where does your soul need to rest?
God, I desire to serve you out of the overflow of my heart. Yet, as we come to the end of the year, I’m running on empty. Rather than plow through the finish line of 2018, I am crawling and limping. So, instead of rushing around today, allow me to remain still. Refresh my soul. Awaken my passions. Ignite a fire deep within me. Remind me to stay connected to the source and sustainer of life. Apart from You I can do nothing. In Your name, Jesus. Amen.