Hard Work Without Order Is Toil

I sat at my desk on Monday morning and couldn’t keep my eyes open. I was beyond tired and moving into exhaustion. I have had the immense joy of going through a tremendous amount of stress at work and at home. I have also made changes to my diet and exercise routine. It all added up to on super tired me.

As tired as I was though, it didn’t feel the same as it did a few years back.

Not that long ago, I would feel just as exhausted. The difference was that the idea of rest gave me anxiety. I couldn’t be still. The stress at work would shut me down instead of push me forward. I would seek to escape the stress at home by isolating, wasting waaay to much time scrolling.

It is strange that I can feel the same level of exhaustion but have them be so entirely different.

I want to take a moment to point out how a few of those things in my past were all connected. Anxiety was the big red flag. Anxiety is a really difficult thing to deal with, because it is also just a symptom of something greater. You can be told all these different tools on how to deal with anxiety, but in my experience, it comes from a faulty foundation. Just like a boat without an anchor would feel uncertain of its destiny, so are humans when not ordered properly towards Christ. Humans though, me in particular, are not good at picking up on red flags. Rather than try and re-order my self towards Christ, I tried to treat the symptom of anxiety. I did that by numbing my brain on social media. It was an escape and it actually stopped my brain my worrying about anything other than what my eyes were glued to.

The problem with this cycle is that it is never ending. I turn my brain off, I don’t deal with the root issue, which causes anxiety, which causes me to isolate, round and round I go. In order to break out of the cycle, I had to do something drastic. So, I removed social media from my phone and now only check it a few times a day. This allowed me to go back through the cycle. I couldn’t turn my brain off so I had to deal with my anxiety. In order to deal with my anxiety, I had to get properly ordered with Christ. It is amazing how far a small deviation, like mindless scrolling on social media, can take us from where we are supposed to be.

Once I was properly ordered with Christ, I still had to work hard. I still got tired. In fact, that Monday was the most tired I’ve been in recent memory. The difference though, is that I could rest. When we are in a disordered cycle, there is no peace. The work we do bears no, or little fruit. Ordering myself with Christ allows me to sit still and know peace, which frankly is pretty novel to me. For those of you who aren’t able to sit and rest, I want to tell you that it is different then what we feel when we turn our brains off. Peace is so much better, but quite a bit more difficult.

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