I thought I understood all about tired. When my son was a teenager, and I was working, and serving in ministry at church, I felt busy, I felt tired. Running, running, running. I knew a lot of people who did a lot more, and slept a lot less. Whew. But the tired that came from cancer treatments took me unaware. I knew a side effect was fatigue. It didn’t seem like such a terrible word until I experienced it.
Tired. Those days with mind-numbing fatigue. Can’t get out of bed. Struggle to do the basics. Walk to the bathroom. Brush teeth. Forget about the shower, it takes too much energy. Don’t even attempt the stairs. Glad to be bald, because it requires less maintenance. You plan the day in a whole different fashion. If there is a doctor appointment, forget about anything else. That takes up the energy for the day, and there are a lot of doctor appointments. I felt like I had a little dwindling box of energy. That was it. Use it up and it was gone until the next day. Try to overdo and you can forget about getting out of bed tomorrow. Strength was a limited resource to be used wisely, cautiously.
This wasn’t me. I thought I was tougher than this. “When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” and yet here I was at a standstill. Once following chemotherapy I spent the whole week in bed watching videos on my Kindle. Tired, tired, tired and resting without relief. But there is a rest. A deep and restoring rest. The kind that renews your mind. A kind that is beyond our understanding. How can this be? It is God’s mystery, but it is unfailing. When you have gone to the max, mentally and physically, and can’t do anymore, God steps in. Sometimes with a faint whisper of hope, of relief, of His strength.
Can your burden really be lifted when it feels so heavy? Yes. When God steps in, in your weakness, during overwhelming fatigue, and in the midst of your great anxiety, He does give rest. How can it be? Nothing has changed in the circumstances, in the physical symptoms, but God provides rest. Rest in the middle of the storm, with real results. Rest, real rest, in His arms, the arms that hold eternity and will not falter.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30.
Today’s post is an excerpt from The Bald Headed, Tattooed, Motorcycle Mama’sDevotional Guide: for Women Battling Cancer & Those Who Love Them © 2013 by Sara Nelson O’Brien.
All photos are courtesy of pixabay.com