Patricia was running on fumes. The mother of three children under the age 10 knew she needed to rest, but she felt like she couldn’t due to the needs of so many who depended on her. Patricia who worked from home felt insulted when others would say “Oh you just stay at home.” Patricia would quietly smile walking away thinking if only they knew her restless story. Patricia was the only one left of her siblings that remained in their hometown. She stayed in town after her sisters left in chasing more lucrative careers to care for their ailing mother who battled muscular dystrophy. Her husband worked a demanding job in sales while completing his Master’s in Business at night leaving her to take care for their young children mostly alone. Their daughter had Oppositional Defiant Disorder, and her behavior had been getting worse over the past few months.
Patricia oftentimes would feel overwhelmed in her balancing act. Patricia’s only time to herself was late at night when everyone was asleep to finish her projects at work, straighten up their home in preparation for the next day, and to make arrangements for her mother’s care. Late at night she would cry in prayer “Lord, I’m so tired!” She yearned for rest for her mind, body, and her weary soul.
Our individual stories maybe differ from that of Patricia’s, but we can all relate to feeling weary, exhausted, and overwhelmed. Many of us juggle the complexity of family, home, and career. Being a devoted caregiver is not for the faint of heart for the duties are endless and unpredictable. I can relate in being a caregiver for a spouse and a special needs child. I’ve balanced being a caregiver as a stay at home mom, and I now working full- time in a career. I noticed that regardless of my work status juggling family, work, caregiving, home upkeep, relationships, and etc could get daunting, and that’s not taking in account the needs you have for yourself. I’ve wiped soft tears at night in trying to figure out how best to handle it all, and I’ve questioned if I was doing enough in fighting like many moms those thoughts of feeling defeated.
I’ve open myself to the knowledge that God hears our cries, sees our struggles, and his loving arms are always available to give us rest. No matter how busy we are in pouring into others we have to be sure to fill our cups in allowing the Holy Spirit of the Lord to pour back into us. In order to be our best for those who need us the most we have to take care of ourselves. We can take care of ourselves not only by diet and exercise, but we can fill our love tanks with the word of God. We must trust in his word knowing that God wouldn’t put more on us than we can handle. The most we feel like the load of what we carry is to much we are to go to the Lord unashamed in plea of what’s on our heart asking for help. We can come before the Lord boldly in our prayers asking God for deliverance, guidance, patience, and relief in handling whatever we are going through. We can find rest for all our needs in the loving care of our Heavenly Father.