I once broke a washing machine by adding a few pairs of jeans into my load of towels. I wanted to save time. I wanted to conserve water, laundry soap, and electricity. However, sometimes I spin my wheels with all my efforts. I end up just like my washtub, stuck in the spin cycle.
When I broke our washer, I realized that overloading is not a good thing. Overloading machinery is very similar to overloading our lives. When we overload our lives with work, constant activities, we often fail to leave space for deeper cleansing breaths and relaxing meditation. We may try to take shortcuts to squeeze in a few more minutes but the shortcuts simply cut into quality and effectiveness. I crammed another pair of jeans into the tub, but it didn’t get the clothes clean; it didn’t take less time. It took more time and even cost me money for repairs.
Are you trying to cram more into an overloaded life? Do you add to your day and fail to eliminate something else? What is suffering because of that? who is suffering?
Jesus understood how we can get overloaded with responsibilities. The apostle Mark references one time the apostles returned from a mission trip with all kinds of stories of all they’d done and taught:
“And He said to them, come away by yourselves to a deserted place, and rest a while–for many were coming and going, and they had not even leisure enough to eat.
And they went away in a boat to a solitary place by themselves.” Mark 6:30-32
Sometimes we need to take ourselves out of the schedules, the work, the appointments, the crowds and get away. Then rest. And pray…commune with God.
Do you lay down to sleep and your brain is so overloaded with tomorrow you think about things you didn’t get done today (or worse–you’re regretting things you did do and mistakes you may have made)? When your system should be at rest, is it whirring and groaning just as my washer motor did when it couldn’t move the heavy load I’d placed upon it?
Let go of some stuff. “Lay aside every weight.” If necessary, get out a notebook and write down the stuff you need to stop worrying about, things you can eliminate from your schedule. Cross off some of the activities. You can’t possibly function forever with your body in overdrive.
Jesus spent a whole night in prayer after he’d spent a whole day preaching and teaching and healing. Sometimes we forget we are human. We cannot do what we need to do without His sustaining strength. The disciples spent time and energy ministering to others, but the Lord knew they needed refueling. It’s best we prioritize our lives in such a way we have plenty of time to talk with our Father. Let Him know we need His help. If anything needs to be written into our day’s planner, it is time with God. Seek first the kingdom of God. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.
PRAYER: Lord, help us to come away and rest with You. Restore us in our weakness. Replenish our strength in You.