Wednesday’s Encouraging Word – Renew Your Strength

Renew Your Strength?

Stop & Check These 6 Indicators of Fatigue

It’s natural to feel tired after you’ve expended energy. However, if it goes on for days and weeks, or you begin to develop a pattern of “extended” tiredness, you may want to check what’s going on….We know from the Word that the “joy of the Lord is our strength” (Nehemiah 8:10), and that those “who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength” (Isaiah 40:31). However, if you have one or more of the following six symptoms, you may be getting fatigued or even on the verge of exhaustion.

1) Irritability / Hypersensitivity: It’s normal that things will at times bother us. Have those things started to really bother you; such as another motorist cutting you off in traffic, someone’s irritating habits, a rude shop assistant, or even delays and long lines at airports? The list can go on and on.

2) Restlessness / Apprehension: Have you ever had a sense that something isn’t quite right? It can also be that feeling that you just want disappear through the cracks somewhere. Have you ever felt exhausted, but you just can’t fall asleep?

3) Chronic overworking: Do you find yourself checking emails or working late into the night. Are you that person who is unable to unplug completely while on vacation? Worse of all, have you been struggling to enjoy normal family life? You could be suffering from major tiredness and don’t realize it.

4) Emotionally Anesthetized: Another major indicator of fatigue is when you don’t feel anything—whether good or bad. Normal emotions are replaced with a sense of indifference or numbness.

5) Escapism: This response to continued overtiredness could include compulsive eating and drinking, overspending, watching TV, surfing the Internet, or the continual trolling of social media sites. It’s often accompanied by the lack of willingness to exercise, connect with friends, or pursue a hobby. Even reading a good book becomes more difficult. When this happens, it can become serious because it can even progress to the point of feeling disconnected from our calling. We’re just going through the motions of work or ministry without any real sense of who we are and what God called us to do. Getting the picture?

Check Your Internal Plumb Line

When exhaustion has progressed to this point it can be dangerous we can put ourselves at the mercy of other people’s expectations or our own inner addictions. Why? It’s because we no longer have a personal internal plumb line against which to measure the demands we are experiencing. We can end up neglecting ourselves physically, as we’ve no time to eat right, take a walk, or get enough sleep. It can get to the point where we neglect the everyday things like washing the car or cleaning the house.

6) Trying to Conserve Dwindling Energy Reserves: Have you ever been afraid that people will drain the last of your resources, so you withdraw to conserve what you have left? This often involves us letting our spiritual habits go backwards. Things that would normally energize us and that we know what are good for us (like praying, reading, or keeping a journal) now feel like burdens.

If any of these symptoms sound familiar, the chances you’ve hit, or are about to hit a wall. But here’s the great news—it’s never too late to reverse exhaustion, no matter how weary you are!

Go To The Throne Not the Phone!

The first thing you have to realize is that you can’t solve tiredness by doing more or doing it faster. It will never take you to a place of peace; in fact, it’s quite the opposite! So sooner or later you will have to stop. Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still, and know that I am God.” When you need to be spiritually restored, go to the throne, not the phone! No matter how good your friends are, they can’t meet your needs like the One who loves you infinitely.

Jesus said, ‘Come to Me…and I will give you rest’ (Matthew 11:28).

Carve Out Time To Listen

You need to designate a special time and a special place to be alone with God. Learn to discipline yourself to go there often as a place of rest and a place of worship. Now when you get there, don’t just tell Him that you want and what you need. Take time to listen to His voice and hear what He’s trying to tell you and show you!

Don’t be in a hurry to get back into the rat race; stay in His calming presence until you understand that the “stuff” you’re carrying was never meant to be shouldered alone.

What’s Most Important To You?

And the most encouraging thing is: We are the ones who get to find the time for what we consider the most important. So get your priorities straight and ‘seek first His kingdom’ (Matthew 6:33 NJKV). Because when you come near to God, He will come near to you (James 4:8 NIV).