Saturday, July 26, 2014

On burning out and keeping the zeal

Never be lacking in zeal, 
but keep your spiritual fervor, 
serving the Lord.
Romans 12:11

As so many of these Romans 12 verses have done, this one is so relevant for the month of July.

For so long Paul and I have felt used up entirely.  At the end of the day we did not have anything left.  We would literally sit on the couch and stare at the wall.  Party people, that's us.

Some people get out of something before they burn out.  And perhaps we should have done that.

Maybe we should have moved on when we still had something left in our burners.  

Go out on a high note.

But if anyone knows my husband well.  You know that Paul does not do things partially or half way.

Full tilt all the way.  

So, I married into that, and sometimes I have to hold on for the ride.  It comes with the territory.

As we were nearing our final days on campus I felt guilty. 

Felt bad that I didn't have more to give.  I still felt it in my heart.  But my body couldn't keep it up.

People, we left it all there.  Burnt out.  And I guess that is how I would like to do it.  

Makes me think of a quote by Erma Bombeck:

                                           “When I stand before God at the end of my life, 
I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, 
and could say, 'I used everything you gave me.”

There were so many lessons learned in those last few months, struggling through the burn out.  But if there is one, it's what Romans 12:11 tells us:

NEVER be lacking in zeal (enthusiasm in pursuit of a cause or an objective), but keep your spiritual fervor (passionate feeling), serving the Lord.

Those are some strong description words.  We are to NEVER lose our enthusiasm for the pursuit of telling the Good News, keeping our passionate feelings for the Gospel on our sleeve, so there is no doubt where our allegiance lies.

Maybe you are in the middle of something that is just wearing.  you.  out.

Feels like you've done it hundred times with the same results.  Maybe you are ready to throw in the towel.

Maybe God wants you in that place for another year.  

Maybe He'll change things up next week.

Oh, that we would not lose our focus.  Lose our zeal for the cross.

Keep serving, keep loving, keep telling the Good News.

So we can say we left it all on the table, used it all up.

For Him.

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