With only a few more weeks left in this semester I would bet a lot of money that a phrase that has slipped out of most of our mouths recently includes the words, “I’m so tired.” Some of us are tired physically from the work and responsibilities we strive to get done everyday. Some of us are tired emotionally because of hardships or unforeseen circumstances we have had to endure. Some of us are tired mentally from the countless hours and effort we put into studying and maintaining satisfactory grades. Some of us are tired relationally because we have been failing in the way we love others or exhausting ourselves to receive little in return. There are many ways this overall feeling of exhaustion can flesh itself out in our daily lives, however I don’t think being tired is always a bad thing.
We tend to view tiredness as something that is constantly getting in our way. We hate feeling tired and often times we complain about the way that our exhaustion inhibits us from enjoying or accomplishing what we want. However, I think that tiredness can actually be something that God uses to bring us closer to Himself.
First of all, the fact that we get tired reminds us that we are weak and humbles us before God. When we are tired, our bodies are physically pointing out the fact that we cannot accomplish everything in our own strength. Realizing this, our exhaustion should not drive us to disappointment, instead it should make us run to our Heavenly Father who has strength to renew us and help us accomplish everything He sets before us. When we humble ourselves in our weakness before God, we are recognizing our need for Him just as 1 Peter 5:6-7 says, “So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.”
Second, our tiredness is a reminder that we need rest. Whether it’s physically, emotionally, mentally, or spiritually, God designed us to need a break. He created us purposely to not be able to accomplish everything in our own strength and He doesn’t want us to be moving and doing all of the time. God delights in us when we stop what we are doing and find rejuvenation in His presence. He made us weak so that He can be the one to strengthen us and give us energy to do the things He places in our lives. Jesus specifically tells us in Matthew 28, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” From this verse we see that tiredness can be something that actually draws us closer to God so that we can experience His perfect rest.
So, whether you are exhausted because you have a million and one things to get done before the end of the week, or because you are emotionally drained and need rest, or whether you are tired from trying to accomplish everything in your own strength for so long, take heart because God tells us, ““My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness,” and Paul reminds us, “to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
In these last few weeks left of school, be encouraged because in our weakness Christ is still strong. Know that it is okay to be tired because it ultimately brings us to God in humility and suggests that we are not able to accomplish this life in our own strength. When you feel tempted to be frustrated in your tiredness, turn to God to be renewed and ask Him for the strength to carry on. The good news is that when we go to our Father in our weakness, He is waiting to breath life into us and strengthen us to go back into the world with bodies, minds, and spirits that are eager and ready to serve Him.