In a previous post entitled “Dog-tired” I wrote about my battle with Chronic Fatigue. Well, it is again that time of year when the daylight hours are rapidly getting fewer, the sun seems to hide behind grey clouds, and it is damp and getting colder. I think those factors are enough to make the average, healthy person feel the negative effects, so I think that it is understandable that this time of year can be quite challenging for those of us who have health issues that are very negatively affected by these factors.
Yup, there are times when I am achingly, bone-tired and weary in my body. Unfortunately, there are also times when I am bone-tired and weary in my mind and in my spirit.
I was raised to be respectful, kind, considerate and helpful towards others. As a Christian, we are given a golden standard by which we are to live out our lives.
Joh 15:12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
And this is how that love is to be manifested:
1Co 13:4 Love is never tired of waiting; love is kind; love has no envy; love has no high opinion of itself, love has no pride;
1Co 13:5 Love’s ways are ever fair, it takes no thought for itself; it is not quickly made angry, it takes no account of evil;
1Co 13:6 It takes no pleasure in wrongdoing, but has joy in what is true;
1Co 13:7 Love has the power of undergoing all things, having faith in all things, hoping all things. (BBE)
The character of Frank Burns on M*A*S*H once said, “It’s nice to be nice to the nice”. Yes it is. We enjoy being nice to nice people and because they are nice people, they usually give us recognition and thanksgiving for what we have done. It makes us feel good. I often feel energized after doing something nice for someone nice. I enjoy the happy feelings I get from feeling useful, recognized and appreciated.
Mat 5:44 But I say to you, Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who despitefully use you and persecute you,
I like being nice. I like being helpful. I like blessing people. And because I have been commanded to do so, I do try very hard to be nice to the “not so nice”. But while being “nice to the nice” energizes me, trying to carry out the commandment in Mat. 5:44 really drains me. To be quite frank, I often feel like being nice to my “enemies” is like offering my jugular vein to Dracula – totally draining of my life essence!
I find it especially draining if my act of “loving my enemy” has resulted in my getting a proverbial cheek slapping. And even then I have been instructed to “turn the other cheek”!
Mat 5:39 But I say to you, Do not resist evil. But whoever shall strike you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.
Sometimes I feel like I am suffering from the childhood illness known as “slapped cheek syndrome” in which both cheeks look like they have been scalded by hot water. My head has just returned to the normal position when some unkind person gives me another good “WHACK” upside the head and my head goes spinning in the other direction.
Those kinds of incidences absolutely drain me physically, emotionally, and spiritually. At times like that, I wish I was a turtle and that I could pull back into my shell. At times like that, living the life of a cave hermit suddenly sounds very appealing. I must confess that there are times when I am very tired of being a “nice guy”. Have you ever felt that way too?
Jesus completely understands that feeling. His loving of his enemies resulted in the ultimate “cheek slapping” – that of being crucified on a cross. And yet, he could still pray “Father, forgive them”.
Heb 12:2,3 looking to Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest you be weary and faint in your minds.
That is why Jesus has the right to command us to love our enemies and to be nice to the not so nice. And that is why we are also told:
Luk 6:35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return. And your reward shall be great, and you shall be the sons of the Highest. For He is kind to the unthankful and to the evil.
2Th 3:13 But you, brothers, do not be weary in well doing.
When we don’t give up on loving the unlovely, when we don’t give in to the weariness, we are the sons of the Highest and great shall be our reward.
And if that weariness just seems to be too heavy, give it over to Jesus to carry for you.
Mat 11:28-30 Come to Me all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke on you and learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and you shall find rest to your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.
I am thankful that I have a Heavenly Father who knows my heart and has understanding and compassion for all my forms of weariness And I am thankful that I have a Saviour who is willing to carry that weariness for me.
“Heavenly Father, help me to love my enemies and not get weary in well-doing”