I’ve been feeling wearied lately. In fact, the other day I was feeling particularly downtrodden. At one particular time of the day, I was walking and asking God “Why can’t I just stop ______ [fill in the blank with persistent sin]?” Once again, He spoke to me in that still small voice, saying “You can’t stop on your own, so stop trying to. I never ______. My Spirit lives inside of you. Walk after my Spirit.” I meditated on my Lord and Savior and immediately the ____ left me. One of my favorite passages of scripture from Matthew 11 then came to my mind:
28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Isn’t it interesting that this particular passage says to learn “of” Jesus and not just “from” Him? One aspect of learning of Jesus could mean to follow his example. We could also pursue understanding His character. He describes His character to us here: “meek and lowly in heart”. God in the flesh was meek and lowly in heart; chew on that for a little while.
As I returned to my desk, feeling much more peaceful, I read an email from Todd Wilson in his Familyman Weekly column titled “Too Many Dad Holes”. If you are feeling weary, I hope this encourages you. Below is the text of that newsletter:
I hate mornings that I’m hoping to sleep in just a little bit. Last night, I even hit the hay early because I’ve felt under the weather lately. I had hopes of sleeping in, but my little morning boy Cal (6) ruined all that…again! This morning he walked in, got in our faces and announced with 9-1-1-urgency, “I need to change ‘me’ on the Wii…the nose is all pointy, he’s way too short, and his head is fat!!”
I’m not sure where that came from, considering the Wii hasn’t been used in 4 months, but it was obvious that it was his big concern of the morning…my morning…the morning I was going to sleep in.
It’s not easy being a parent. In fact, I talk to a lot of dads, and I see the weariness in their faces and voices. They don’t say it, but I half wonder if some are contemplating checking out.
Last week, after just getting home after an exhausting day, I was relaxing in the ‘throne room’ when my wife called out to me with anguish through the door, “Oh, my word, Todd. ‘Frank’ committed suicide yesterday.” It hit me like a hammer. ‘Frank’ went to our church, had seven children, & was one of the smartest guys I knew…and I liked him.
We don’t know much about the whys, but I assume he was weary. In his clouded view, it seemed like the best way out. It’s so deeply sad, but the sadness is for what he left behind and what he’ll miss out on because he grew weary and stopped. His weariness is over, but his children will feel ‘the hole’ for the rest of their days.
Dads leave big holes. I was just talking to fellow Familyman, Andrew L. a couple days ago, and he said a 40-year-old dad friend of his died this week in a tragic accident. “He was a great dad,” he said sadly.
Dads leave big holes.
My fellow, Dad, I know you’re tired and weary. But don’t stop. Don’t check out. If you need help, ask. Your family needs you so much…and you need them.
I’ve got to go check out that Wii thing now.
You ‘da Dad,
PS – Here’s the promise – “Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary (and stop).” (Galatians 6:9)
(Todd grants permission to freely copy and distribute his newsletter in whole or in part. You can sign up to receive the “Familyman Weekly” at www.familymanweb.com.)