Silence and Centering
“Be still, and know that I am God!- Psalm 46:10
Gracious God, our sins are too heavy to carry, too real to hide,and too deep to undo. Forgive what our lips tremble to name, what our hearts can no longer bear, and what has become for us a cloud of guilt and shame. Set us free from a past that we cannot change, open to us a future in which we can be changed, and grant us grace to grow into Your likeness and image, through Jesus Christ, the Light of the world. Amen.
PAUSE FOR 2 MINUTES OF SILENCE
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)
Have you ever found yourself fatigued in your walk with God? You may have found yourself just sort of going face down mentally, physically and spiritually, and potentially even checking out. I think there are many different specific reasons for burning out in our Christian walk, but I believe all these reasons come down to a couple of common denominators. Let’s look at the first one.
1. We burn out in our christian walk when we take our eyes off of God.
This is one of the main reason’s we get tired in our walk and we become tempted to check out from serving or helping others in ministry or any other area of life for that matter.
The problem occurs when we put our eyes on either the work to be done, or the people we are serving. There are times when we look at all the work to be done and we can become discouraged and believe that we cannot begin to make a dent in what is needed. Instead of digging in and doing something, our discouragement causes us to take our eyes off of God and His unlimited power and resources.
Another reason we can become discouraged is we put our eyes on others. Let’s face it, people can cause us to stumble when they do hurtful things to us or are unappreciative. The problem is we have taken our eyes off of God and forgotten whom it is we are doing this for. We must always do everything as if unto God and not man (See Col. 3:17, 23; 1 Cor. 10:31).
We should always remember, God doesn’t need our help; He is quite capable of doing everything Himself. He chooses to allow us to be a part of ministry and to be blessed in helping others. And it just might be that God may not want us doing everything “we” have chosen to do. He may have other plans for us, but we have not asked Him. Instead, we load up another rock on our wagon and soon find ourselves moaning about how heavy our wagonload is, as we try to climb the hill. Another reason for burning out in our Christian walk is,
2. We burn out because we attempt to do things in our own abilities, power, and resources.
This one seems so simple, but it is one of the key reasons why so many Christians pull up their spiritual tent stakes at a church and walk out the back door. Again, we see so many things needing to be done and we decide to roll up the shirtsleeves—we dig in and begin to work, work, work, until Bam! We are burned out! Simply put, we have run out of fuel.
We can get so involved in ministry; we stop taking the time to be fed ourselves. We need to have our own quiet time in prayer, in the reading of God’s Word, and just resting our bodies. It is imperative we spend time with God, praising Him, seeking His will, and being refueled with His empowerment to do the things needing to be done.
What is the fuel of the Christian life? It is God — more specifically, the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the oil, which fuels the flame within us — the flame providing God’s light. Throughout Scripture we see the Holy Spirit is synonymous with oil. We see the Holy Spirit’s sanctifying power when Moses anointed Aaron (Ex. 30:23-35). The act of anointing with oil indicated the bestowal of authorization through the Holy Spirit.
In much the same way the oil fuels the flame of the lantern, the Holy Spirit fuels us. A cotton wick within a lantern appears to be the source of the light when it is burning, but it is the oil within the wick actually burning. If the wick were not to be submerged in the oil then the oil would not be drawn up, and the wick would soon be the source of fuel and flame. Using this illustration we can say, we are the wicks and the Holy Spirit is the oil.
So what do we do when we find ourselves burned out, or better yet, how can we prevent it? The answer to both of these questions is we need to be filled with the Holy Spirit each and every day. We (the wick) must also be immersed in, and filled with oil (God’s Spirit) to continue to burn bright and not burn out. We see this in Ephesians 5:18.
And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit,Ephesians 5:18 (NKJV)
We need to seek God each morning and ask for His fresh filling of His Spirit, and then seek God for wisdom on which projects we are to be involved in and which we are to pass on. If we are faithful to follow this practice we can be assured it will always be God’s Holy Spirit empowering us to serve. It’s not wrong to desire to help, but we need to remember this, apart from God we can do nothing (John 15:5), and anything that is good is always from Him anyway (Rom. 7:18; James 1:17).
STUDY QUESTION: According to Ephesians 5:18, what are we commanded to do?
PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you asking God to renew you by filling you up with His Spirit daily?
PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Seek the Lord each morning and ask for a fresh filling of His Spirit.
2 minute of SILENT PRAYER & REFLECTION.
MAKE THIS YOUR PRAYER TODAY:
Father, thank You for Your Holy Spirit within me. Fill me today with a fresh filling of Your Spirit and empower me to do all You have called me to do. Father, I ask for Your wisdom and discernment to make the proper choices today. In Jesus’ precious name, amen…
Devotional By Scott Wright