This was derived, borrowed and inspired by 4 Steps to Take When You Are Running on Empty by Justin Knowles
Christ, in all of His love, told us that we are to take His yoke. In a sense this makes life more bearable but this does not tell us that it will be a breeze. Jesus did not say that there wouldn’t be any burden anymore, He said that there will be a burden but it is lighter than what you have.
Jesus never said that the world would not disappoint. He never said that you will not get tired. He said it was easy and light not non existent.
Never the less burn out still happens even to the best of us. We cannot avoid experiencing defeat in certain areas of our life. We cannot avoid feeling tired and weak. Even Elijah who was used by God to bring fire to Mt. Carmel also felt defeated.
Now here comes the confession.
That is what I felt in the past. Last year was mostly down time. Without disclosing too much, I was already running low on energy. The youth programs that we set up were dry. Some of the people I used to rely on disappeared for personal reasons. I found myself going through the motions of work and church life withouth the joy in my heart. My passion was suddenly sucked out of me.
So what would you do in these moments? What could we possibly do? I came across this article on self improvement for church leaders that outlines four things to do when these things happen. These are steps that should not just be done when needed but also regularly. I have adopted it to share it with you.
- Distance – Keep your distance from others. Go to a place where it is secure and no one would bother you. Make sure that that place is somewhere where people could interrupt you. I learned to keep a sort of hide out whenever I am down. I make sure that no one knows it or if ever my friends did know it,it woiuld be so obscure that they would forget how to get there. One of those is a bakery, a restaurant and park.
- Disconnect – Turn off your phones, laptops or any gadget that you may have. This world has been full of distractions lately that it makes us think of many different things at once. So disconnect everything and focus only on God. Music helps but personally I’d prefer to put on ear phones with no music or just pure instrumental sounds playing. Sometimes songs, even Christian songs, could be a distraction to your talk with God.
- Detach – Move away from your worries. Detach yourself from your problems. Instead remember God’s goodness in your life. Remember a time when you escape a probable harm, or when you got a favorable response to your prayer. Remember when God helped you through a test or when He has revealed himself to you while on a hike or a trip. There is something there. We just tend to forget. We all have short memories or selfish consciousness.
- Devotion – Take time to talk to God. Pray. Dont bother about the length. Dont bother if you think that you are adding to God’s worries because that is impossible.He is God. He can handle everything and He wants to handle your problem. Lay down everything to Him. In the end, it is between you and God. Read the Bible aftrwards. Start with a Psalm. Do t just picm one verse, read the whole chapter or more. Think of what happened during that time and why that author wrote those things. You will not just learn but discover that God has already an assurance when you feel down and out.
Remember that even the best of us fall down but God would never leave us behind. He is there just keep your eyes at Him. The more you look at Him, the more everything seems small around you.
“Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ”
Philippians 3:8, NLT