DO NOT GET BURNT-OUT!
We use this expression when we have done too much and one is totally worn out. We might also say that somebody has hit the wall. This describes a situation when we really can’t do more. It’s enough.
Does God want us to hit the wall? No, He has never given us yokes that are so heavy that we hit the wall. “But I have worked for a Christian organization or I have worked for my church”, some of you might say. That doesn’t convince me. You might have come under some religious spirits. All Christian activity is not God. We read in Matthew 11:30 that His yoke is easy and His burden is light. I can almost hear some of your questions: “What shall I do when the pastor asks me to take upon me a new activity? I really don’t want to, but I feel I have to. Others might say that they want to go into new activities, but they really have enough as it is. I want to ask you: “Who is your Lord?” Quite a few people have their identity in what they do and not in who they are. Who are we? We are children of our God, our Dad I Heaven. He has created us for a purpose. The next question that might come from you is this: “Are we not supposed to obey our leaders?” It is a good question and I will answer both yes and no to this question. I believe in order in the church. God is a God of order. We have five ministries described in the Bible, apostles, prophets, teachers, shepherds and evangelists. (Eph.4:11) They are supposed to minister and equip the rest of the church. They are not called by God to put themselves higher than others. You, reading this chapter has also been called to take part in the ministry of the saints. Ask the Lord what He has given you and use it. All of us might do something else to fill a gap for a short time, but be sure you do not stay there too long. Many pastors are called to be a pastor, but everybody isnâ€™t led by The Holy Spirit. Many are starting activities beyond their capacity and that could be hard for the members. Some do this meaning well while others have wrong motives. They want to promote themselves and they want to look big and important. No one is faultless. I believe that we should love the Lord with all our heart, then ourselves, then our spouse, our children and finally our ministry. Many start with ministry and the identity is in ministry and not in the Lord then. You should obey your leaders as long as they do not go against your conscience. One should respect them, but not end up as a slave. Some come under control and that is witchcraft. You might obey because of fear and others think they are rebellious if they say no.
We should never be governed by fear, but by The Holy Spirit.
Some Christians are so busy that they forget why they serve and where they might get power and strength for their ministering. You must never forget to spend time with the Lord, talk to Him, be with Him and read the Bible so that you would know what He would like to say to you. Without Him you might hit the wall.
Quite a few divorces are taking place because one part of the family is gone all the time. It could be at work or in the church. I believe that is wrong. A wife needs her husband and the children need their dad. A husband needs a wife and the children a mother. When I have been out travelling, I have been in families where mostly the man has been busy with the church and ministry and the family felt neglected. I say that this is not spiritual, but an escape. There might be times when this is necessary, but it should be for a very short period of time. Now I can hear some of you scolding me for not understanding that you need to have two jobs. No, I don’t. I think that most of you in that situation make wrong priorities. I was home with the children when they were small. We did not receive money from the government the same way as now. We lived in a simple way. The children did not wear the latest fashion, but they had a mother who was there for them.
An overload of work is not always the reason for being burnt-out. You could actually do the wrong things. You do not do the things you want to do. I have talked to pastors laying down their own calling in order to support someone else. Some of these have hit the wall. Some churches do not use the women to do other things than making coffee or taking care of the children. I have seen several frustrated women putting a lid on their calling and they have become physical and mentally sick. God is now restoring women more and more. Read Galatians 3:28 where Paul says that men and woman are one in Christ. If water does not have an outlet, it can become rotten. The same happens with a frustrated woman. She might get sick. I visited six places in Ukraine last summer and I had seminars, was preaching and prayed for a lot of people. It was a flow in The Holy Spirit and I was like a fish swimming in the water. I had more energy when I came home than when I went even if I had been very busy.
I believe that we all need vacations some time. We need to do something that is fun and desirable. Our soul and body need rest, but also to do something that is fun. We might get charged with energy from different activities, but we need to do something for ourselves sometimes. That is not egoistic, but necessary. Your Father in Heaven loves you and wants the best for you.
Sometimes one hits the wall because of spiritual resistance. The devil hates Christians and especially those living an active life for the Lord. We do not wrestle against people, but against principalities, powers and rulers in darkness. (Eph. 6 ) The devil might create so many problems that one finally gets burnt-out. The devil might also tempt a person to do so many good things that he or she hits the wall.
God is very sorry when one of His children gets burnt-out. The devil laughs.
Never think that you are indispensable. Only Jesus is indispensable. I am not saying that you are not important, but not indispensable. I know that many will protest and they might go to work very sick and some might even be a danger for themselves and others. There are times when we should resist the devil and go in spite of symptoms, but you must be sure that you do that in faith and in the spirit of God.
When you start getting problems to sleep, lose your appetite or eating too much, constantly take pills for headaches or stomach pains, getting depressed and never relaxed, it is time to stop and reflect. Are you having your identity in what you are doing? Do you believe that you are loved without doing anything? The Lord would love you if you were lying on the couch without lifting a finger. The normal is to function but do not work to be loved.
There are times when you meet a wall. Ask the Lord then to give you strength to go through the wall. Maybe you should bow down and then you would see that there is a way underneath the wall. (Humbleness) If you in faith can see what there is on the other side of the wall, it is easier to come through to the other side.
THE LORD TAKES YOU BY HIS HAND, LEADS YOU AND GIVE YOU NEW POWER.