Do not grow weary.
Are you there, too? Weary and wondering where the space to slow down and take a deep breath will be. Running on empty, pouring out constantly, doing all the right and necessary and good things but feeling like you have nothing left to give. Burdened by what is happening in the world and in your community and in your family.
To continue to fight the good fight, finish the race, live faithfully and make disciples requires endurance – not burn out. To be honest, I’m weary mentally, emotionally, and physically today. This year has been hard, the last few months have been challenging, the last week has been a whirlwind of busyness and joy and laughter and late nights, and the coming months are completely unknown. There are not enough hours in the day to get the work done that I’ve said “yes” to, and not enough hours at night for the rest my body desperately craves.
I need Jesus. But I also need a nap.
In our reading today, the author of Hebrews encourages us to move beyond the rituals of faith (which are all good things) and to dig deeper. It’s not enough to stay on the surface. My husband is a master at all things landscaping, so the example in our reading today hit me in a new way as I read it and made me think of the grass in our backyard. There is grass that grows quickly, which seems like the best option – it turns green quickly in the spring, but it’s often thin and weak, with shallow roots. Then there are the sections that feel luxurious, the type of grass that takes weeks of careful nurturing, watering, and care to start even the smallest section. The color is deeper, the grass is hardy, and when it’s roots are established it will start to spread on it’s own. It’s not easy, it’s not quick, but it’s worth the time and effort.
Land that is watered but neglected will produce weeds.
Lives that are all work and no rest struggle to experience the abundant life God has prepared for us.
Hearts that accept Christ but refuse to mature in their faith neglect the gift God has given us.
Fortunately, the author of Hebrews not only offers a warning to avoid staying at the surface, but a solution. Remain diligent. Stand firm. Remember that God is just and faithful. Imitate those who show perseverance, endurance, and patience.
Our reading from Galatians 6:9 offers similar encouragement: “So we must not grow weary in doing good, for in due time we will reap, if we do not give up.” When we’re weary, giving up feels like the easiest path – but hiding from the world, neglecting to use the gifts God has given you, and believing the lie that God could never use you anyway? It might feel easy for a season, but the Christian life is not a place where we’re called to “easy” or “comfortable.” You are needed, right where you are, to be a light that reflects hope to a hurting world. But we can’t do it well when we’re weary.
Do not grow weary. Spend time with God, asking Him where you’ve been pushing forward instead of waiting patiently. Seek His wisdom to find out if there are good things you’ve been nurturing that have kept you from investing in something even greater. Rest in God’s presence, believing in His promises, His faithfulness, and His love. Do the hard, slow work that results in deep roots so that, when the timing is right, your faith will spread to those around you and you will be the one they choose to imitate.
Week 3 Challenge:
This week, in addition to your daily reading, read over Genesis 14:17-24 to learn about Melchizedek. What type of high priest was Melchizedek? What does it mean that Jesus is a high priest in the order of Melchizedek rather than being a high priest in the Levitical order, like the other high priests of Israel? Why did Jesus’ priesthood need to come from a different system?
Week 3 Reading Plan:
Week 3 Memory Verse: