Pleasing God, Making Disciples of Jesus Christ

When Weariness Comes Knocking

GALATIANS 6:9 – And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

THEME OF THE DAY. WHEN WEARINESS COMES KNOCKING. It is inevitable. It cannot be avoided. It will not be convenient. This “it” is serving the Lord and leaving an impact for Him in our lives. Howard Hendricks once said about the Lord’s service and laboring for Him, “The service that counts is the service that costs.” One cannot read the Bible, and especially the Lord’s teaching in the Gospels, and come away ignorant of the truth there is a high price to pay to effectively follow and serve the Lord. One of those “payments” will be our weariness.

In today’s scripture, the Apostle Paul encourages, even exhorts, the Galatian Christians to “not grow weary in well doing.” When I read those words I ask, “Why would Paul do this?” The answer is not difficult. He states the negative – do not grow weary – because we experience the positive – we do grow weary. But our weariness for the Lord is not primarily physical. Yes, we will grow weary physically. However, spiritual fatigue is the predominant type of weariness. It is a fatigue that often is manifested by discouragement when we witness little fruit in our service. It also manifests itself when we feel underappreciated or taken for granted. And spiritual weariness comes knocking at the door of our hearts when the warfare of praying for souls, ministering to the hurting, and our constant battles with sin zap the strength from us. God does not leave us without hope in weary times. We are told in the book of Nehemiah, “the joy of the Lord will be your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10). That applies to all types of weariness – physical, spiritual, and emotional. When it comes to weariness, whatever the kind, we don’t have to give into its demands. God’s joy will strengthen us but there is an additional help to overcome weariness. It is a matter of mind renewal or thinking right when weariness tempts us to take a break, cease serving the Lord, or allow the flesh to win the battle. Here are three thinking patterns to aid in defeating weariness.

First, remember what our Lord Jesus endured. When tempted to give into weariness, go back and survey the life of our Lord. He lived in a continual state of weariness, yet, did not give into His weariness. Think long and hard on what Jesus endured for us and then watch how we will be restored with empowering joy and strength from what we see in and from Him.

Another way to overcome weariness is to remember what matters most in this life – the spiritual and eternal. Isn’t it amazing how easily we become too tired to go to church, attend prayer meetings, study our Bibles and read good spiritual books, but don’t experience the same fatigue when going to a worldly activity, watching television or reading a worldly work of fiction? This should drive us to pray for the Lord to empower us to the necessary discipline to keep the spiritual and eternal in the forefront of our thinking and living.

Finally, we overcome weariness by remembering what lies ahead – seeing Jesus and personal judgment. Let these two future realities strengthen our weary hearts to keep on keeping on knowing what we are marching towards – faith turned to sight and detailed judgment of our lives. There will be the swelling within of strength to overcome weariness.

If we are living the Christian life as God intends, weariness is inevitable, but it doesn’t have to sideline us in the Christian life and service. We can overcome if we engage our minds to remember what the Lord endured, what matters most in life and eternity and what lies ahead – seeing Jesus and our judgment before Him.

PRAYER: “Father, may I know more and more the strength of Your joy when I am feeling weary.”

QUOTE: “If we are going to make a difference for Christ, weariness is the price that must be paid.”