Friday, September 14, 2018
Running on Empty
Like a car...our physical/mental/spiritual/and emotional lives have a tank that can run on empty.
As you might remember from a previous post, we are remodeling our bathrooms, which means that physically I am working harder than I am used to. This is also a new moment in our lives when we feel over our heads...and need to watch several YouTube videos to figure out each problem. This reality leads to mental fatigue. Then there is the spiritual and emotional tiredness that happens, perhaps as a result of the first two or because I feel like I am praying constantly with every swing of the hammer.
When was the last time you felt that physical exhaustion? Perhaps when you were out for a hike or doing some major yard work?
What about mental fatigue...what is it that taxes the firing of neurons in your mind?
How about spiritual or emotional tiredness?
These realities happen around us and within us. And unlike my car, it isn't always easy to refuel and fill the tanks of our mind, bodies and souls. But, small moments I find are extremely helpful. Unless a gas take that you can fill for a certain price...the cost of keeping ourselves healthy in our whole bodies will cost something besides money. It takes time. For me, silence helps more than words can describe or define. I need moments of stillness to be. To remember that God rested on the 7th day... and still calls us to do the same every week.
As theologian Barbara Brown Taylor says..."Once a week, be good for nothing." Enter into the truth that there is enough.
Even if the bathroom remodel isn't done...
Or that sermon isn't perfect...
Or that kitchen is sparkling clean...
To rest in the arms of One who calls us into such space.
For me, Fridays are a great time to do that. By noon, I try to make sure that I have turned off the computer...the sermon is what it is...I head home to be. Usually Friday evenings are great family time. And Saturday mornings are moments to linger over another cup of coffee.
How do you take time, make space? Knowing that it isn't easy. Sometimes that is the exact moment something that had been needling at you...some comment or moment of brokenness from the past week rears its head and ruins your perfect siesta sabbath moment. Suddenly, your mind is back in the meeting from Tuesday...your shoulders are tense...and your soul is stirring. Or you keep seeing all the things you could be doing around the house...or feel that pressure to be useful in some way.
But to have space, to be in the emptiness, isn't always a bad thing. It is a moment to cease and stop, breathe and be, to be still and know that God is God ~ and even God rested.
I offer this not as another thing to do...but as a call I need in my life and might offer you more than a trace of God's grace in yours. I pray it is so.