“I wish the world would stop so I could catch up!” The words my 17 year old son said to me after he returned from a recent retreat with his high school senior class. The trip was a very reflective time for him as he is about to embark on his next phase in life, off to college . He has some decisions still to make, where is he going, what is he studying and he is nervous about making the wrong decision.
It hurts my momma’s heart to think that he is so overwhelmed. I get that feeling too sometimes, where you think about things so much, or decisions that have to be made and you end up with “analysis paralysis”, and not wanting to make a decision at all!
I can be overwhelmed by family issues, work, school, finances and commitments, often all at the same time. What’s hard is that these seasons seem unavoidable, and I’m left with little choice but to plow through if I hope to receive a harvest.
In seasons of overwhelm, my sinful nature becomes evident. Everything is so cloudy that I can’t see Jesus. I get impatient and snappy with my family. I try to cut corners and slack on my responsibilities instead of doing what I said I would do because I feel justified by my excuses. I often walk out of step with the Holy Spirit. I am not loving, kind, gentle, self-controlled, peaceful, joyful, patient or faithful.
In times when I am broken down and tired I need grace. I need to experience God’s grace, be strengthened by God’s grace, and be motivated by God’s grace. But I have to go to the throne to get grace!
“So then, since we have a great High Priest who has entered heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we believe. This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most” (Hebrews 4:14-16, NLT).
It’s encouraging to me that Jesus can sympathize with my weaknesses. Jesus, too, is familiar with being broken down and tired. He knows how it feels to be tempted to sin, but didn’t. As a result, I have a holy High Priest who beckons me near to the throne of grace despite the foolishness of my life. Because I am forgiven in Jesus, there is grace for me! I can go to God with full confidence that He will not condemn me for all the ways I feel like I failed in the midst of my overwhelm.
I feel overwhelmed and tired, but God is able!
I feel like I’m going to snap, but God rescues!
I feel like I’m out here in these streets all by myself, but God is my friend!
I wish I could tell my son that his feelings are temporary and that this time of feeling overwhelmed will pass. Unfortunately, from here on, his life will be filled with seasons of ups and downs. My prayer for Him is that he will learn to grow to receive God’s Grace to get him through!
2 Corinthians 12:9-10, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (ESV)