"Spiritual exhaustion never comes through sin but only through service, and whether or not you are exhausted will depend upon where you get your supplies. . . . The process of being made broken bread and poured out wine means that you have to be the nourishment for other souls until they learn to feed on God. Be careful that you get your supply, or before long you will be utterly exhausted."
This was part of an Oswald Chambers' devotional my mom sent me the other day after we had talked and she felt that I was worn out. Funny enough, that same morning the devotional I read also spoke of exhaustion, relaying the story of Elijah from 1 Kings, and saying, "God knew Elijah was worn out, and He knows you are too. . . . You won't find answers in the calamity and chaos. Listen instead for the still small voice."
I have confessed many times before that I am a people-pleaser, which I think is where my workaholicness stems from. I feel like I always need to be doing something for someone, which leads to...you guessed it, exhaustion.
I think a lot of people struggle with this. It's not that the things we are doing are bad, they could be good things, but its a matter of WHY you're doing them, and WHO you're doing them for.
For me, my automatic response is yes when someone asks me to do something. And the Lord continually reminds me that I need to take a step back and ask myself, is this really something He is asking me to do, or do I just feel like I need to do it because this person asked me to. If the first, then I know He will give me the strength and whatever else I need to get it done. But if the second, it will leave me exhausted.
So Oswald Chambers reminded me that I need to serve from my position in Christ, not to gain other people's acceptance, or for any other reason. And my devotion reminded me to take the time to WAIT (my word for the year) and listen for that still, small voice to guide me in my decisions.
I feel like I've probably written something like this before, but it keeps coming up, so clearly it's a lesson I'm still learning, and maybe someone else needs to hear it, too. Let these verses from Isaiah encourage you, as they have me: