ON EXHAUSTION

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I let my kids watch an extra hour of television yesterday. Hate that. I’m just so tired.

It’s the end of the semester, and it’s been another busy one. Weddings, special events, and my daughter graduating from college. I knew I was burning the candle at both ends…and here I am again with a terrible head cold and I’ve lost my voice.

My husband came into the kitchen last night, just as I was wiping the counter clean with my last bit of energy. The dishwasher was started and the coffeemaker ready to go for the morning. He was all cheerful after a successful business call and was opening the freezer to reach for the ice cream.

“Oh no you don’t. The kitchen is closed for the night,” I whisper hoarsely. (I’m so grumpy when I’m sick and tired.)

My husband looks shocked. “Come on, Priscilla. I was looking forward to it.”

“Nope. Look at the time. I just finished cleaning.” I actually don’t think I can face one more, dirty spoon.

“Oh, please!” he pleads in disbelief, with one hand on the freezer handle hoping for a change of heart to cross my countenance.

“Nope,” I stand fast.

Big sigh.

My youngest daughter who is drawing at the island looks up at her dad and advises quietly, “You have to just keep begging and begging and begging, and eventually she’ll give in,” she smiles.

Hence the extra television that day.

Things you learn when your mom is worn out.

There are just so many things I don’t do well when I’m really tired. Like parenting. Or friending. Or basic housework. Or prayer.

That last one got me thinking. Why is it that I feel so little spiritually when I am like this? I don’t feel drawn to God’s Word. I don’t send any faith with my prayers. I don’t sense God’s presence with me. I don’t even feel upset about world poverty. Just nothing.

Then of course I feel guilty. Just a little. I mean, maybe I’m just a fair weather friend to God. And then I start wondering (oh, no!) maybe He is just a fair weather friend to me. When I’m in my spiritual “A” game, he’s my champion. But when the worst of me comes out, what then?

I guess it’s an age-old question. Is God only for us when we are really for Him?

Then I remember some words of Hudson Taylor, former Christian missionary to China, when he was exhausted and overwhelmed. He wrote something like this, “I cannot read, I cannot pray, I can scarcely think. But I can trust.”

But I can trust.

I can trust God.

I can trust a God I can barely lift my eyes up to. I can trust a God I can barely serve or speak to. I can trust a God I cannot give to.

They call it the doctrine of “aseity.” Which is just a 400 year old word that means something like, God doesn’t need anything from us. He’s got everything in himself. He’ll take our worship, but he’s not waiting for it. Or desperate for it.

He loves us Freely. Willingly. Joyfully. Out of the over-abundance of his supply.

It’s all grace, baby.

So I sit here in the morning light with my cup of coffee and I look over at my Bible and devotional books. I offer a couple limp prayers, and take a breath.

I may not be the best Worshipper right now. But He is still the best God.

(And in case you were wondering, my husband did get his ice cream.)

 

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