I was looking at a website on the internet the other day which spoke to Christians about the signs and symptoms of burn out. I was quite appalled to find that I had had all this article’s listed symptoms of burn out at three different times in my life. Carey Nieuwhof did an excellent job of listing the 11 signs on his website.
In examining the three times that I know I was in burn out, I was more intrigued with figuring out how God maneuvered me out of my burned out state than examining the burn out itself. These are a few of my conclusions.
First and foremost, our God is a God of course corrections. He takes those of us who are lost (basically, I think that’s what burn out is) and He works through relationship with us trying to adjust our course. But, this takes an already established relationship with God for Him to do this work. One of the course corrections that we can take in order for God to be able to speak into our hearts is getting back into the Bible and digging around until we find a truth that elevates our thinking to His higher level.
A second way that is one I highly recommend is to make a commitment to God in a small area of life and then faithfully keep it every day or every week. Like, taking up praying every day for a different country of the world or making a commitment to attending church as many Sunday’s as you can in that year is another way of course corrections. This isn’t a commitment made to God, it is a commitment you make to yourself. It is a way of establishing within your own heart, mind and soul that this small commitment is important to you. It is a way of saying that it is almost a vital necessity to take you on the road to burn out recovery.
I can guarantee, that my becoming burned out was mainly due to the fact, that I held tightly to lies as if they were truth. I can guarantee, that my burn out also involved my life becoming out of balance. And I can guarantee that I was led down the rosey path that the devil laid out for me, in a very crafty way, that fed the lies that I wanted to believe by using my own desires.
Making a small commitment to yourself looking towards advancing your relationship with God and making it a priority over your exercise routine or the extra hours you put into your business cannot only give your life more balance but will pull you away from those activities that profit the body or the wallet but not your soul. They may profit your outward beauty but not the things of the heart. After all, what good is it if you gain the whole world of beauty, riches or business success but you lose your own soul in the process? What good is it if you believe the lie that you really are doing this grand gesture in trying to become someone else’s Savior in social reform or political activism only to see it abandoned and forgotten in five years?
The biggest deterrent to wanting to make course corrections is that they take time to see their benefits. They take patience, commitment and lots of time for God to work in and through these little changes at speaking to your heart and implanting the Word into your soul. When we live in a society of easy fixes, the long road isn’t all that appealing at first. It takes time for these little changes to become habits and it takes a big mental note to self that reminds self to be grateful to the One Who made it possible.
There are many little things we do can make a big, good, blessing packed impression on God.
Taking a moment to thank God for something small in your day that you’re really appreciated will bless Him tremendously. Turning to Him in prayer without waiting until it all becomes a big mess is another way to bless Him. The idea here is to draw God near by creating an internal environment that makes Him feel at home in your heart; that makes Him feel like dwelling with you; that makes Him eager to draw close to you.
There is a type of peace that the world gives. Jesus spoke about that in John 14:27. He tells us that there is a kind of peace that the world gives to people but that isn’t the kind He has for those of us who follow Him. The peace that the world gives is in feeling secure from riches, wealth, popularity, beauty and/or fame. But, Jesus is the Prince of Peace because He did the job of reconciling all things back to Himself when He went to the cross. He made peace by His death on the cross and His resurrection from the dead. Therefore, through Him, by the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit we can enter into His peace and rest. This is the peace that we get in knowing that death will not deter us from going onto a wonderful eternal home. It is in knowing that we can have hope in the midst of uncertainty without caving into hopelessness. This is Jesus’ peace.
One last thing about burn out is that unless you take up your shield, your sword and your helmut and do some battle, even at least stand firm against the wiles and deceits of the devil then you not fully recover as quickly as you need to. Recognizing the actions, thoughts and plans of our true enemy is a reality that we must face and we must be willing to stand firm against. When we stop seeing the all the problems in our lives as our enemies and come to see there is a larger enemy that we are ignoring, we will go in circles never really leading us out of burn out.
Continue to ask, and God will give to you. Continue to search, and you will find. Continue to knock and the door will be open for you.(Matthew 7:7 ERV)
Thanks for stopping by to my little BLIS.BLOG. I hope you got a little nudge of encouragement in my sea of words. Be blessed and know Jesus desires to show you His love.
by Janet Williams
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