Running on Empty

Time for a refill
Time for a refill
This is how I feel: empty.

I’ve stretched myself way too thin. My “to do” list has exploded and I don’t have a clue how to rake it in. I find myself racing around trying to get everything done in a day, only to find myself right back at it tomorrow. Only problem–tomorrow never comes. I never get to the bottom of the “to do” list. I’m not alone, either. My husband declared the other day, “I think I forgot how to relax. I feel like I always need to be doing something.”

I admit we need a family reboot. We are scurrying around doing good. However, Galatians 6:9 says,

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

But, I am weary. I am tired. I crash as soon as my head hits the pillow. To be completely honest, I’ve been here before. It’s not unusual for me to be in this position.

Nevertheless, I’m afraid I’ve done it again.

God’s way is for us to do a few things well. Before we say “yes” to every opportunity that comes knocking on our door, it is vital that we seek God’s will for our lives. If we are stretched too thin, we will grow weary in doing good. Unfortunately, for some, it is difficult for us to say “no.” People pleasing can take precedence over pleasing God. Make no mistake, we can find a great sense of purpose and meaning in our lives by our accomplishments and tasks. I feel great fulfillment in crossing things off my list. Others will find themselves running on the treadmill of busyness to drown out dreaded silence, unconfessed sin or painful experiences. We all know that we live in a fast-paced culture and we encounter times when we don’t even have a clue how to slow down. We feel like we are on a never-ending roller coaster. Scratching our head, we ask, “How in the world do I get off?”

There are a myriad of reasons we find ourselves stretched too thin.

If we are pouring ourselves out without pouring anything back in, eventually we will find our tank resting on empty. It’s a common tendency to cut out time with God when our schedules become overfilled.  It’s usually the first thing to go. However, scripture reminds us that it is through God that we get our fill, our portion.

LORD, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure.” Psalm 16:5

“You are my portion, LORD; I have promised to obey your words.” Psalm 119:57

And if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.” Isaiah 58:10-11

How does a branch bear fruit? The branch simply stays connected to the tree, and the natural outgrowth of being connected to the tree is growth. Jesus says, I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

God intends for us to bear much fruit, but in order to do so, we must “abide in Him.”

If we are captive to the activity around us, rather than being attentive to God’s voice, we run the risk of running empty. Abiding in Christ simply means staying near to Him.

Busyness can keep us from hearing and doing the will go God.

If we are too busy to set aside time to spend alone with God, we run the risk of being clueless about what He wants us to do. Secondly, if we are intent on accomplishing our plans and goals, we miss out on what God has in store. 

Growing up in Sunday School and Church, we used to sing hymns. This one written by Richard E Blanchard, Sr. has always been a fav.

Like the woman at the well I was seeking
For things that could not satisfy;
And then I heard my Savior speaking:
“Draw from my well that never shall run dry”.

Fill my cup Lord, I lift it up, Lord!
Come and quench this thirsting of my soul.
Bread of heaven, feed me till I want no more.
Fill my cup, fill it up and make me whole!

There are millions in this world who are craving
The pleasures earthly things afford.
But none can match the wondrous treasure
That I find in Jesus Christ my Lord.

Lord, fill my cup today. Fill it up…fill it up with more of YOU!