When You Feel Like Giving Up: Simple Steps to Avoiding Burnout
- Tuesday, March 06, 2012
The Psalmists often sang – in their songs of frustration and desperation – the words “I will” when it came to getting out of their slump.
When Asaph was disillusioned with the way life was going, he said “I will meditate on all Thy works…I will remember your deeds.” (Psalm 77:12).
David, in asking God to consider his sighing and hear his cries for help, said “I will come into your house; in reverence will I bow down” (Psalm 5:7). And when he felt like he was being defeated, he said “I will know that God is for me…I will not be afraid” (Psalm 56:9-11).
The Psalmists didn’t say “I think” or “I feel” or “I should.” It was “I will” – a sense of determination – a determined course of action. In all 150 Psalms in the Bible, the phrase “I will” is sung at least 140 times. That told me something. It made me realize that – whether I feel empty or not, whether I am motivated or not – I need to do something to allow God to infuse that energy into my life again. I needed to take whatever action would put me in the place where God could relight the fire in me and re-ignite the passion that once burned brightly. But I couldn’t wait until I felt like doing something, because the feeling might never come.
So I began to follow a course of action – a series of “I will” statements -- to keep focused (in my mind), keep fit (in my body) and keep fresh (in my soul).
- I began to say “I will start my day in prayer” and “I will get into God’s Word” so I could stay focused in my mind.
- I began to say “I will eat sensibly today” and “I will take opportunities to exercise” so I could keep fit in my body.
- And I began to say “I will” appreciate what God has made,” “I will take time to reflect and worship” in order to keep my soul fresh.
As I began saying “I will” about the things I didn’t feel like doing, God met me where I was and infused that fuel back into my life.
So what do you need to say “I will” about today?
“I will tackle this to do list with enthusiasm”?
” I will prioritize my family today”?
“I will live in a way that honors my God”?
“I will do all that is required of me to the best of my ability”?
Say those two words “I will” and see what you end up accomplishing today.
For more on keeping your body, mind and soul refreshed, see Cindi McMenamin’s book When You’re Running on Empty and save yourself from impending burnout. Cindi is a pastor’s wife, mother, national speaker and the author of several more books including When Women Walk Alone, When Women Long for Rest and Women on the Edge. For more on her books, free resources and ministry helps, see her website: www.strengthforthesoul.com.
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