I asked a group of friends how they were doing. One word came up almost immediately.
Suzie, I’m overwhelmed.
One after another, my friends confessed that they were feeling this way. There are a lot of reasons we are feeling overwhelmed. Parents are trying to decide what to do when school starts. Teachers are wondering how to do their job in a new way, and be safe. People are impacted by too much togetherness while others have been isolated for months. The things that we usually depend on for normalcy have been taken away.
What does it mean to be overwhelmed?
Overwhelmed means “to bury or drown beneath a huge mass.”
That’s staggering to think about. When we are overwhelmed we are carrying an emotional boulder bigger than ourselves. It’s drowning or burying us. So the thought that if I work harder, try harder, or can wish this away, doesn’t seem to be the answer.
Maybe I need someone to help me. Maybe you do too.
Come to me, all of you who are weary and heavy burdened.
These are Jesus’ words. He’s asking us to run to him when we are overwhelmed. He’s offering a respite. Wisdom. He’s willing to take that part of the boulder that was never ours to carry. And maybe he’ll point out those things we can do, like take a nap because our physical body is super tired.
He says I can come to him, and so can you. He cares about how you feel. He longs to lessen that burden.
How do we come to him?
We come as we are
We don’t have to pretend or be something we are not in the moment. We can just come as we are.
We come right now
Don’t wait for another moment. Run to him. Maybe that’s a quiet moment in the bathroom, or kneeling by the side of your bed. Maybe that’s a walk in nature where the tears can flow. Just go to him. He’s waiting for you.
We come even when there are no words
He knows exactly what you need. You don’t have to have the right words. He knows what you need before you even ask.
Father, thank you for the woman reading this today. She’s overwhelmed and exhausted. Thank you for the invitation to come to you. Here she is, hands and heart open, knowing she is loved and received by you. Knowing that you can somehow take the major share of this burden and carry it for her. I pray for peace that floods her heart. I pray for laughter and joy that is grounded in you. I pray for physical and spiritual rest. In Jesus’ name, amen.
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In today’s podcast, Holley, Jennifer, and I share all the ways we respond to feeling overwhelmed and what to do to help.