(06.08.21 – Burn Out -Haggai 1:5-11)
My friend, may I ask you a question? If we feel burned out, perhaps the only real question is how did we get there and how do we prevent ourselves from getting there again?
My friend, Life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I'm M. Clifford Brunner.
How often have you used this phrase: "I just have no more to give; I'm empty and that's all there is?" Is it ever fair to say that we are used up and that we have nothing left to give? If we feel this way, then there must be a point in time when that sort of burning out really does occur. Perhaps the only real question is how did we get there and how do we prevent ourselves from getting there again?
Here's a story: A number of years ago we had a terrible ice storm in our valley. The wind and rain blew for a day or two and then the temperatures dropped dramatically overnight turning wet driveways into skating rinks and power wires into huge, swaying, pendulous weights. It wasn't long and they began to snap and we lost power. My wife and I had prepared somewhat as we did have provisions, a fireplace with plenty of firewood cut and split, and a number of flashlights. We also had my grandmother's old oil-burning lamp. It was one of the first things I grabbed when the lights flickered and then went black. I lit a match and we had light. It wasn't long, though, before the light began to dim and then it too went out. Unfortunately, it seems that the lamp reservoir was nearly dry and I had forgotten to refill it. When the wick dried out it burned up pretty quickly leaving nothing behind except some swirling, sooty smoke. The lamp was now pretty much useless, burned-out, because it no longer had any fuel. Even with fuel in hand, because the wick was charred, the lamp could no longer be used.
Feeling burned out? As Chuck Swindoll remarks, "You're through. Finished. Burned out. Used up. You've been replaced, forgotten? Well, it’s a lie! No matter how bad or used up your feel there's always something left for God to use to meet His purposes." (Chuck Swindoll) We really need to ask ourselves this: is it burnout we're talking about here or a simple lack of fuel that has led to a very charred wick? Imagine a wick that is placed in oil and then lit. If the oil runs out, the wick burns. As long as there is oil, the wick doesn't burn. As long as we are living in dependence on the power of the Holy Spirit, we won't burn out. The question to ask is: what's burning? God tells us to "give careful thought to (our) ways" (Haggai 1:7). Are your ways neglecting God's Word and fighting through the tough stuff alone? If so, burn-out, being used up isn't far off. You and I need to make sure the lamps of our hearts are filled every day with the "fuel" of God's Word. Burnout is serious stuff; but often it is merely the product of our negligence in attending to our spiritual flame and not a result of life's daily woes.
We pray. Heavenly Father, when we feel burned-out, unable to move on with life and its many challenges, remind us Lord that when we rely on the power of the Holy Spirit, we won't burn out because the flame of the Spirit can never be extinguished by the challenges of daily living. Help us Lord to continually asked the question: what's burning–our faith or a false trust in our own ability to cope with life? Remind us to always "give careful thought to (our) ways" (Haggai 1:7). Forgive us when our ways lead to neglecting Your Word and fighting through the tough stuff alone. May we always make sure the lamps of our hearts are filled every day with the "fuel" of Your Word. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.
If you have a special prayer request, please send your request to ”This Passing Day!”
<firstname.lastname@example.org> From Beech Springs, God bless you for Jesus sake.