I admit it. I've used a certain word a lot lately. I have found myself telling my husband and other moms that I am weary. I am weary of pressing on through discouragement, and weary of fighting what seems like losing battles. I am weary of drama and uncontrolled emotions. I am weary of cleaning house and doing laundry, only to turn around and not be able to tell I did a thing. I am weary of cooking meals that are rejected by children. I am weary of inconsiderate demands and unappreciated efforts. I am weary of reminding, reminding, reminding. I am weary of being ignored. I am weary of standing firm, enforcing boundaries, and being the "bad guy".
Being a Mom is not just physically tiring. It wearies my entire being: my willpower, my mental well-being, my emotional strength, as well as my body. I know I'm not the only one.
It's easy to look to people and things to restore our energy and happiness. We may decide we need more sleep, or we need extra "me time", or that we need to spend time with our friends. We may decide that we just need to re-work our chore charts and daily schedules, and whip those kids into shape. We may think that we need to wind down with a movie or a book, some chocolate, and our favorite drink.
Or we may just grow angry and depressed. We may dwell on how weary we are, take on a little more mommy guilt, or assign blame to others. This just drains our emotional reserves even more.
Maybe we even give up, procrastinate, stop trying. It's so tempting to stop trying. "Why do I even bother?" we ask ourselves.
Why do I bother trying to teach them manners?
Why do I bother cooking healthy meals?
Why do I bother trying to do devotions with them, when they won't be quiet?
Why do I bother folding clothes they don't put away?
Why do I bother homeschooling them, when they dawdle and complain every single day?
Why do I even bother speaking, no one is listening?
I know I'm guilty of each of those reactions at times. Sometimes I try to escape the situation with a movie or book, or more sleep. Sometimes I even let myself grow angry and pass the blame onto others' shoulders. I often ask myself, "Why do I even bother?" Sometimes I throw a tiny tantrum and just tell my family that "I quit!" They are informed that they can fix themselves hot dogs and bologna sandwiches from now on, because I'm not cooking meals anymore.
Today, as I was thinking about how WEARY I get trying to push my kids to DO their schoolwork, on a daily basis, I was reminded of this verse:
"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers." Galatians 6:9-10
God knows that we get weary. He knows we want to give up. He knows how hard it is to be a Mom (or serve in any ministry), and He tells us not to grow weary, not to give up.
On Sunday our pastor preached about hope. He said that Biblical hope is a much STRONGER word than the English hope. In our modern day, we say we hope something will happen, but there is always a doubt included. But when the Bible speaks of hope, it is a "CERTAINTY about the future that affects how we live today". When Pastor said that, God whispered to me that I needed to have Biblical HOPE that the work I do each day with my children WILL bear fruit in the future. Not to let doubt sneak in, steal my hope, and let me become weary. As I was thinking about that, Pastor read a verse that seemed to speak to me again,
"We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Thessalonians 1:3.
I was reminded that my work at home, with my family, is produced by my faith. It is prompted by my love for them, and for God. And my hope in God should enable me to endure, to persevere, to NOT grow weary. Of course, then my mind immediately jumped to Galatians 6:9-10. "Do not grow weary ... " I honestly don't remember if Pastor read that verse next or not, but it's written in my sermon notes.
Even though we know we shouldn't grow weary, we still do. We're human, and we get discouraged. But God-in-Flesh spoke the very solution to that Himself. Jesus invited us to come to Him.
"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." Matthew 11: 28-30
He will give us rest. He is gentle and humble and gives rest to our souls when we learn from Him. So why do I push on in my own strength for so long? Why do I neglect spending time in His Word? Why do I not listen to praise music each day? Why do I forget to take my troubles to Him in prayer until after I've already searched the internet and asked all my friends for their input?
"Come to me," He says. I pray that the next time I find myself feeling weary or angry, that I will remember that invitation. "Come to me."
"Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Isaiah 40:28-31
If I place my HOPE in Him, He will give me strength when I am weary. He will lift me up on eagle's wings and give me the energy to endure, to keep serving Him by serving my family. I suspect, that when my focus is properly on Him, He'll even give me peace (rest for my soul) so that I can serve my family JOYFULLY without getting stressed out, discouraged, or angry. He'll give me the patience to teach my children right from wrong ... over and over and over again.
I have to HOPE that He will take my work, even when it seems I'm not making a difference, and bring a harvest in my children's lives one day. I can't give up. I need to be faithful, relying on His strength when I am weary, and trust Him to work in their lives.
What makes you feel weary? Do you run to Him, or to something else when you are weary?
Clinging to HOPE,