As I slid onto the bathroom floor waiting for my husband to come home and the ambulance to arrive I kept thinking, “I still have things to do for the kingdom. This isn’t how it will end for me”
I find it interesting that my devotion for last Friday was going to be on managing our momentum. I was going to teach on rest and the importance of rest for maintaining our momentum! Then I was forced to rest with an internal bleed that caused massive blood loss that placed me in a vulnerable state and needing help.
You see, we (society) has a way of glorifying the woman who runs herself into the ground doing it all. And we strive to live up to the expectations or idea that that’s what we are meant to do as women on a mission. But this is a falsehood that I have fallen for and I suspect a few of you may have too. We read the lovingly written stories, accounts or articles about mommas, wives, sisters, or grandmas who faced the challenges in front of them, never complaining, and always showing up: no matter how tired, worn or sick they were. They did it all. And then we (maybe just me) feel guilty for taking a nap or venting to a friend about the struggle. We read Proverbs 31 and forget that boss woman had a staff to do a lot of her heavy lifting and she managed what she wanted to do on her list of to-dos.
Girls, if we want to maintain the mission of what God has called us to do, then we not only need to rest we need to accept the reality of disappointing others when we do take a reprieve. And sometimes that someone is ourselves. We need to learn that accepting help and recognizing our limits isn’t weakness or lazy- it’s wisdom.
I’m not talking about not dreaming, aiming or trying. I’m talking about not comparing your mission to another’s or striving for acceptance or afraid to disappoint those we love. We are killing ourselves living for approvals or praises.
We will have plenty of moments to hit the mark, but we can’t win all the time. We will have season of rest and being retrained, mentally resetting, emotionally refreshing, physically recovering, and spiritually reviving. This isn’t losing; it’s sitting out the game entirety.
Managing our momentum for the mission, requires rest and sometimes disappointing others. I think of Jesus not showing up on time to heal Lazarus. Jesus utterly disappointed the ones who knew he was able to do what they expected; heal their brother. In their eyes, Jesus failed them.
Now we know the end of this story but the take away in this is Jesus maintained the mission, not living in the expectation of the others. It grieved Jesus knowing his friend died and his sisters were crushed by Jesus’s delay. Think about this;Jesus disappointed John the Baptist and NEVER showed up for his cousins rescue!
Our King managed his momentum! Jesus left the crowd behind. A crowd in need with needs. He disappointed the ones waiting and expecting. Jesus relaxed and even allowed himself to be served, his feet washed, a gift lavished, a grave paid for. Heck, he placed himself in the most vulnerable state of all; he came as a baby and made himself helpless and in need. His nose wiped, his diaper changed, his kingship made into nothing so he could come and serve, save and redeem the same ones he was dependent on for survival as a baby
I don’t want to beat the same drum about rest, and how we must learn the balance of what to say “yes or no” to. I want to express the importance that when we do choose rest we may disappoint others. When we pause we have to surrender to letting some down and receiving help at times. When we do leave the crowd behind we have to reject the guilt that we couldn’t perform like great aunt Mildred.
I have memories of my mom sleeping in. She loved to sleep in; still does. But she is the hardest working woman I know. She did what she wanted to do, not what others expected her to do. She didn’t always perform according to what I expected her to do, but what she couldn’t do, she found others to help or hire.
Sis, give yourself to your strengths and give your weaknesses to others. Embrace what you are called to do and reject the lie of performance. Accept you will disappoint some and resist the guilt when you need to say “no”.
You are not called to do it all. You are called to do your assignment well!
Final thought: You will be remembered for your determination not who you disappointed. You will be admired for how you served and how you made room for others. You will be written tributes about the example of your priorities and how you chose the important yes’s in your life. But they will never know what you said no to, who you said no to, why you said no. They will know that you poured out your life for Jesus and they were honored to witness your heavenly assignment.