My pastor shared this question he was asked last week while attending a leadership conference.
My heart sighed quietly. That's how I felt this week. Tired. As much as I love my job I have felt more burdened than ever before and that burden weighs heavy and takes it's toll. My brain is full of hard and terrifying facts of life shared with me by women in crisis. My heart is broken for children and families ripped apart by abuse, addiction, and anger. My body is exhausted from the emotional involvement and the unrelenting need of those around me.
"What one word would you use to describe leaders today?"
Without hesitation he responded
I would love to say that my theology solves the problem of burden and weariness, although theologically it does. Jesus says "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." I know this is true and I have experienced it for myself. But...I need to experience it again.
I need the refreshment of the gospel to penetrate my sin sick and weary soul once more. I need a gushing rush of God's grace to overflow my heart and remind me it's not up to me, but up to Him.
I need help to remember that it's precisely in the midst of my weakness and my burdens that God's grace is at work. You see, God is not waiting for me to finally "get my act together". Honestly though, that's what I'm waiting for! I would be so pleased with myself if I could say I wasn't stressed, tired, or burdened and that I handled everything just so. I wouldn't be contemplating all the ways I screwed up, said wrong things, and forgot to say right things. I'd have no more regret, guilt, or condemnation. Mmmm...come to think of it - I wouldn't need a savior. Well, now I'm getting somewhere!
Here is the glorious, welcoming, and soul satisfying truth. All my weariness and all my heaviness is meant for one thing. To point me to my need for Jesus. If I could get my act together and deal with all that comes my way, I would. But I can't. That's why I need Jesus. He alone is the answer to every unmet need, every one of my burden stained tears. And so, until that time that God takes me home I will "proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes". 1 Cor 11:26 This is not some trite religious vow that is empty of power. This proclamation reminds me of my great need for a Rescuing Redeemer. I am not proclaiming my own self sufficiency but Christ's sufficiency on my behalf. His body, His blood. Poured out for me. His life, His power for me. His return, His victory for me. His redemption and His re-creation for me. All things will be made right, made new, and redeemed for me.
It's Monday. I have no guarantee this week will be easier. But,
I proclaim the Lord's death until he comes.
I rest in His love and acceptance for me in spite of my sheer and utter inability, weakness, and failure.