Dear Roses, are you overwhelmed?
Do you spend every day working until you’re exhausted, yet still find a pile of work awaiting you the next morning? Do you feel overworked, weary, and stressed?
Does your life seem like a constant rush of activities and commitments and dreams? Perhaps it is not—perhaps it feels rather empty of achievements, yet you still reach the end of a day feeling exhausted and overwhelmed. No matter how much or how little you do, something feels wrong. Your soul grows wearier with each passing day, and no amount of achievements can fix your sense that something is wrong.
Work is good…
The Bible commands us to work. Time after time, God reminds us of the value of working. We were not created merely to lay around and do nothing, we were created with a purpose. To avoid working is to miss out on God’s plan for our lives.
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters,” Colossians 3:23
Work is a good thing, for it is crucial to keep our hands from growing idle. Yet at the same time, work can become a dangerous trap. We allow our tasks and work to become the most important things in our lives, essentially turning work into an idol. We spend the entire day either working – or stressed out because we should be working.
This is when working becomes an issue. We allow productivity and busyness to direct our lives, instead of God. When our desire to stay productive or occupy our time with some task or another begins to affect our ability to enjoy God’s creation, we’ve run into a problem. Our desire to remain busy should never get in the way of our ability to rest and enjoy the lives God has given us.
… but life is not a race.
Perhaps work is not what dominates your life at the moment. Perhaps it’s spending time with your friends, or some other activity. But if you have something which is pushing you to forever rush through your life, never pausing to rest, you’ve run into an issue.
It’s easy to get swept up in the “race” of life which we see around us. All around us, we see people applying to college, getting jobs, or making top grades in school. We feel pressured to do the same as them. We think that so long as we complete a few more things, we’ll feel content. Yet that contentment never comes.
That is because we were not meant to rush through life. God did not create your beautiful life merely so you could rush through it for fear of wasting what you’ve been given. He created this world for you to enjoy. In a culture so obsessed with remaining busy, we need to remember to stop and enjoy what God has given to us.
The world is here for us to enjoy
God made this world so that we may enjoy it. He is a loving father, and He loves to bless His children with good and beautiful things. The world around us—the people and creations and nature and landscape and animals—reflects God’s beauty and His handiwork. He wants us to enjoy the world He made for us, to marvel at a thundering waterfall, and to enjoy the fresh air of an early morning, and to admire the beautiful sunsets He created.
Yet it is our tendency to race past all these marvels, our heads buried in our own little world of responsibilities and tasks. We’re so busy living our lives that we ignore the beauty of the life God’s given to us.
Sometimes there’s no time to rest
With school, work, family obligations, and more, our lives fill up with stress and commitments at an alarming rate. To be told we need to rest or take a break feels like an ironic slap in the face if we’ve been struggling to complete the day’s tasks, not even finding time for five minutes to ourselves.
There are undoubtedly seasons of life where we’re so busy it feels like we barely have time to breathe. Quite often, however, much of our sense of urgency and stress comes more from ourselves than our situations. We pressure ourselves to complete lots of work which we don’t necessarily need to do, packing our days full of unnecessary commitments.
Let yourself rest
Don’t give in to that kind of lifestyle. Instead of turning your tasks into an idol, take time to set them aside.
Writing this article was something of a wake-up call for me. I was reminded that this world is so wonderful, and sometimes you need to take a break and simply breathe in the fresh air and thank God for what He’s given you. I pray that this is a wake-up call for you as well, dear Rose.
Don’t let the world overwhelm you. Don’t let your dreams and commitments rule your life to the point that you can’t enjoy your life. Take time to breathe, rest, and experience the beauty of what God’s created.
Set aside time to admire the peaceful silence of an early morning. Let yourself relax and enjoy a beautiful painting or piece of music. Marvel at the world God’s made for us. This world is so beautiful. This life is so beautiful. Don’t let that beauty pass you by in the rush to live it.
Ever since she was little, Julia has loved to create things with words. As she’s grown in life, she’s seen and experienced how God’s love can restore and give hope. She writes with the goal of shining God’s light for others and pointing them toward a greater hope. As a contributing writer for the Wilting Rose Project, she hopes to encourage other young women, reminding them of the one who gives us our worth.