When I was in elementary school, I cried one afternoon because I didn’t feel well. My teacher sent me to the nurse’s office, which I had never been to before. The nurse was very sweet and asked me what was the matter. I told her that my entire body ached, and I didn’t feel very well.
She pressed her hand against my forehead and took my temperature, but I didn’t have a fever. She looked for others symptoms, but I had no congestion, coughing, runny nose, vomiting, diarrhea, or sweating. The nurse was stumped, but she could tell I was being sincere about how I felt.
I remember her looking into my eyes, sensing my distress, and instantly making a decision. She called my mother to come pick me up from school and take me home. She told me to lie down on the bed that was fitted with a clean, white sheet. I instantly reclined my sore, tender body, closed my eyes and waited for my mom to arrive. It wasn’t until I was in high school that I realized what had happened to me way back then.
Our high school gymnasium had a long rope hanging from the ceiling to the floor. We had to climb that rope as part of an athletic challenge. All my life, I had been athletically driven, so I climbed thirty feet to the top and rung the tiny bell that was fastened to the ceiling.
I had mastered this feat many times, including in elementary school.
I woke up the next morning, and my entire body ached. I could barely move, let alone get out of bed. I finally had to rock my poor frame out from under the sheets, and drag my weary bones to the shower. I needed hot water to relax my tense muscles.
As the heat penetrated my skin, I remembered my time at the nurse’s office in elementary school. I distinctly recalled finishing a fitness test during P.E. the previous day. Suddenly, after many years had passed, I realized why I felt sick: my entire body was sore from climbing the gym rope to the top!
God often has us climb great heights of faith for Him. We use up our strength and give Him all we’ve got. We finally make it to the top and ring our little bells of victory, but the next day we may feel spiritually worn out—like our souls are sore.
Oftentimes, we worry that something is wrong with us. Maybe we have a emotional ailment that is plaguing our lives. But I think many times we are simply tired and in need of a hot shower and a warm bed.
After achieving a difficult task for God’s kingdom, our souls may be a little tender and sensitive. Instead of grabbing hold of the next big adventure, we can take a little time to rest and recoup. It is difficult to serve others and run the race of faith when we are on the verge of tears. Rather than charging head first into the next spiritual challenge, we can lay our weary heads at the foot of the throne and call our Abba Father to come pick us up.
Questions: Does your soul need a little rest? How can you make room to spend time with your Abba Father today?
“Come to Me, all of you who work and have heavy loads. I will give you rest. Follow My teachings and learn from Me. I am gentle and do not have pride. You will have rest for your souls” (Matthew 11.28-29 NLV).
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