You Don’t Have to Burn Out
And he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”— Mark 2:27
Are you excessively tired all the time, and even after sleeping, do you wake up feeling tired all over again? You may be experiencing some of the symptoms of exhaustion, or what is commonly called “burnout.”
Long periods of overexertion and stress can cause constant fatigue, headaches, sleeplessness, gastrointestinal problems, tenseness, a feeling of being tied in knots, and an inability to relax.
Some other signals of “burnout” are crying, being easily angered, negativity, irritability, depression, cynicism (scornful, mocking of the virtues of others), and bitterness toward others’ blessings and even their good health.
“Burnout” can cause us to not exercise self-control, and when this happens, we will no longer produce good fruit in our daily lives. “Burnout” steals our joy, making peace impossible to find. When our bodies are not at peace, everything seems to be in turmoil.
God established the law of resting on the Sabbath to prevent “burnout” in our lives. The law of the Sabbath simply says we can work six days, and rest one day. We need to rest and worship and play. Even God rested after six days of work. He, of course, never gets tired, but gave us this example so we would follow the pattern.
In Exodus 23:10–12, we find that even the land had to rest after six years, and the Israelites were not to plant in it the seventh year. During this rest, everything recovered and prepared for future production.
Today in America, almost every business is open seven days a week. Some of them are even open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. When we make ourselves available at all times, we are in danger of “burnout.”
People today are quick to argue that they cannot afford to take a day off, but I say they cannot afford not to.
Some people feel guilty anytime they try to rest, but that guilty feeling is not from God. God wants us to live balanced lives, and if we don’t, we open a door for Satan to bring some kind of destruction (see 1 Peter 5:8). Trust God that your resting time is just as valuable as your working time.
Prayer Starter: Lord, thank You for the examples You have given us in Your Word about rest. I ask for Your help to live a truly balanced life and do whatever it takes to have the proper time to relax and recharge. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.