“Do you ever get tired?”  That was a question asked of me on a trip last year when I went to Spain with a group of clergy from Mississippi. The question was asked in response to me taking every opportunity to see and experience as much as I could of the culture, scenery, and atmosphere of Andalusia.  If there was an extra walking tour, or a small group that was going out while others were resting, I was there!  “Do you ever get tired?”

The answer was “Yes, I get tired, but not from doing things like this.”  Of course, I have certainly limits on the amount of energy I have physically, though I am blessed both with good health and a commitment to staying in the best physical condition I can be.  I consider it a moral obligation as well as a practical consideration to take good physical care of my body.

But let’s expand the question.  “Do I ever get tired?”  Yes, I get tired.  I get tired when I see people failing to live up to God’s calling and who they can be.  It tires me out whenever I see God-given potential and opportunity being wasted. It wears me out that so many go throughout life with no sense of direction, no sense of purpose, no sense of identity as God’s child, no sense of God’s presence or calling in their lives. It wears me out to see churches that have such enormous potential, and I can see it, but they can’t, or won’t see it, and so they settle for less than the best of what God has to offer.  I get tired when I have discussions with folks who are more concerned about a minor point of theology than they are about the suffering of others.  I get tired whenever I fall into the trap of trying to meet other people’s expectations about who I am supposed to be and what I am supposed to do instead of listening to God.

There are a lot of other things that make me tired as well, but I think you get the point.  Overall, I get tired when I focus or when I see others focusing on what is temporary and unimportant to the neglect of what is eternally important.

By contrast, I get energized whenever I see folks out serving God in word, deed, and heart, reaching out to those whom others disregard.  I get energized when I see and hear of lives transformed by the love of Christ shown in others.  I get energized whenever we as the church are dedicated to fulfilling the mission to which God calls us.

So, part of my resolve with the help of God, is to not focus on those things that make me tired but to pour the energies of my body, mind, and spirit into those things that fill my heart rather than deplete it, those relationships that bring health to my spirit instead of bring disease to my soul, those behaviors that elevate those around me instead of tear others down, that bring me joy instead of anxiety.

How will you address, in the spirit and love of God, those things that weary your soul?  What will you do to engage in that which will energize your spirit?