This week was a challenge for me. Yesterday, I was pretty depleted of my strength, so I went to bed pretty early. When I woke up, I got to thinking, “Why was I so exhausted?’ I have an autoimmune disease and sometimes the symptoms feel sudden. As if it comes out of nowhere. But actually it’s just sneaky.
You see, I am often so busy that, before I know it, the autoimmune has me flat on my back. Later, once I have gotten my rest, I reflect on what happened and I realize that my body was talking to me the whole time, letting me know that autoimmune was trying to creep in. But I had ignored it.
First, it was stress. The busy brain or mind racing before bed that kept me up all night causing anxiety. Then it was the exhaustion and confusion from pushing myself too hard mentally and physically. And then I was “suddenly” flat on my back, depressed.
I have got to start listening to my body. Not only that, I also need to be much more careful about taking care of it. During those times of stress, I sometimes stop paying close attention to what I am eating. Or worse, I don’t eat at all. I will work and forget to eat. My husband will say to me, “Did you eat lunch?” I'll look up and it’s 3pm...no lunch.
In addition, I’ve got to stop packing my schedule with everything else BUT time to breathe. I scheduled so many things this week and now my body is screaming at me, “When are you going to stop!” You'd think I would remember the words I wrote in my own book, "...you are not a machine made to do things; you are a creation of the Lord, made to worship.”
This whole situation reminds me of Elijah in I Kings 19 when he was running for his life from Jezebel. He was running and running and running, and with good reason. He was terrified! He was so anxious that he ran himself all the way into the desert where there was no food or comfort, only heat and exhaustion. His body became so weary that he collapsed under a tree after all the running, and then he finally turned to God. He had neglected to go to God first, so before he knew it, he hadn’t slept or eaten and he was in a severe depression to the point where he didn’t want to live.
After he prayed for the Lord to take his life, he laid down under that tree and fell asleep. As he was sleeping, an angel touched him and said, “Get up and eat.” The angel had cooked him a nice loaf of bread and provided him with water. Elijah ate, got nice and full, then fell right back to sleep. That’s the best sleep, isn’t it? When you are nice and full. The angel woke him a second time, he ate again. And Elijah was so strengthened by that food and rest that he was able to travel another forty days and forty nights!
Let us all learn from this story.
1. When things get stressful, don’t be anxious. Pray to the Lord, FIRST.
2. Don’t run your body ragged, listen to it! When it is time for bed, stop working, and go to bed! Whatever you are working on will be there in the morning.
3. Do not neglect to eat and drink water. And when you do eat, pay attention to what you are eating.
Sis, sometimes what you need most is a good meal and a long nap.
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