I have always thought the word ‘weary’ was just plain weird. It often seems tired, worn out, and exhausted cover that corner of the adjective world, but in recent weeks, I have come to embrace the word ‘weary.’ There is an exhaustion that can overwhelm the mind, body, and spirit that just drains all of the life force out of you – that is what I feel weary is. I have felt tired and exhausted and worn out before. But I am weary now in a way I have never known.
Eight weeks ago was Mother’s Day. It was a nice and quiet Mother’s Day, and I did not know it would be the last one I shared with my mother. Seven weeks ago, we threw a late but large birthday party for my son and around 40 of his friends. It was a big task, but a wonderful day for him. Six weeks ago, my oldest daughter graduated from high school and I turned 41 years old. It was an emotional time, but in happy ways. Five weeks ago, we celebrated that graduation with a huge open house and the chance to see so many friends and family. It was a special time, but a long day. Four weeks ago, my mother passed away. I don’t have any words to describe the ache I still feel for her, and the stream of thoughts running through my mind about missed opportunities to spend more time with her before she left this world. Three weeks ago, I directed the first week of Vacation Bible School for our church with almost 400 children. I had amazing help from a plethora of people, but it is a daunting task. Two weeks ago, I directed the second week of VBS for our church at our multi-site with just over 60 children. It was a different experience at a new location and very fulfilling as far as program firsts go, but draining nonetheless. And one week ago, I tried to breath and prepare for my mother’s memorial service that happened last week. It was a beautiful service and a wonderful time sharing memories with friends and family, many of whom I hadn’t seen in years. But it reopened the chasm in my heart that simply cannot be filled by her memories. Today, I try to breathe again and refocus on the next four weeks, which I will spend in Hong Kong leading a team in running VBS programs there. I am praying for the strength which I know that God will provide to get through this month, but just thinking about it makes my bones and brain ache. I am weary. I am more weary than I have ever known, in my body, my mind, and my soul.
I don’t write this today for a Dina Pity Party. I know that no one can change the schedule put together months and months ago because I am dealing with a personal loss. I just have never walked this road before – this weary one. I am like the Energizer Bunny when it comes to crazy schedules. But I am sure there are others out there who are overwhelmed in a similar way, searching for something to find strength and courage to get through the day, week, month, or whatever they are facing. That is what I have been searching for, and of course, I can find it in God’s word.
Isaiah 40:28-31 reads “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
For the mornings that I don’t want to get out of bed because I am overwhelmed by the “to do” list for the day, he gives me the strength that I need. For the days when I don’t feel like I can sleep because I am worried about everything, he gives me peace. For the times when I just feel like I can’t take another step, he helps me to run. I just need to surrender to him. And when I am this weary, that isn’t hard to do. I just have to keep waiting for him to fill me up again.