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Empty and Exhausted

Lord, I seek refuge in You;
let me never be disgraced.

Save me by Your righteousness.
Psalm 31:1 (HCSB)

Series Focus: “Rising From the Valley”

After a time of doing all to stand, struggling to hold up our shield of faith, and pulling ourselves through some challenging trenches, we often reach a point of exhaustion. With nothing left to give and seemingly no joy to be found, we may want to wave our flag of surrender and succumb to defeat. Have you ever felt that way?

I would not try to rewrite David’s description of such emptiness and exhaustion! He does a good job of encapsulating the experience in Psalm 31:9-13 (HCSB). David says:

Be gracious to me, Lord, because I am in distress; my eyes are worn out from angry sorrow—my whole being as well. Indeed, my life is consumed with grief and my years with groaning; my strength has failed because of my sinfulness, and my bones waste away. I am ridiculed by all my adversaries and even by my neighbors. I am dreaded by my acquaintances; those who see me in the street run from me. I am forgotten: gone from memory like a dead person—like broken pottery. I have heard the gossip of many; terror is on every side. When they conspired against me, they plotted to take my life.

Can you hear his weariness? His desolation? David cries out to God and expresses his distress, anger, sorrow, shame, loneliness, brokenness, and fear. What does your list look like? Maybe it’s similar to David’s. Perhaps yours also includes pain, grief, unrealistic demands, unmet desires, or something else.

Identifying the things that overwhelm us and taking them transparently to God in prayer is the beginning of our restored energy, vitality, and peace. Of course, God knows everything about us! Confessing our distress to God is more for us than for God. Sometimes we become blinded by the exhaustion and demands and we see no remedy. This time of introspective study provides an avenue for God to reveal truths about ourselves and bring them from the inside out.

Once the afflictions, emotions, and actions are defined, then we can move forward in the remedy God provides for us. What does that look like? Seeking out His instruction in scripture. Rejoicing in His faithful love. Knowing He sees and hears and knows us.  And trusting Him with every step, every circumstance, and every moment of our lives.

David provides an excellent example of this for us! In Psalm 31:7-8 (HCSB), he writes:

I will rejoice and be glad in Your faithful love because You have seen my affliction. You have known the troubles of my life and have not handed me over to the enemy. You have set my feet in a spacious place.

And in Psalm 31:14-15a (HCSB), David exclaims:

But I trust in You, Lord; I say, “You are my God. ”The course of my life is in Your power.

It’s not wrong for us to acknowledge we are weak, tired, and just plain spent! We should not deny we are struggling when we are in distress. God desires us to cry out to Him at all times—to seek Him and ask Him for help in every time of need. Know that God will meet you exactly where you are! The course of your life is in His power. Trust Him in every moment.

Holding Fast to Hope,
Maryann

Reflection: Identify the things that drain your energy and overwhelm you. Spend some time alone with God in prayer. Look up scriptures that encourage you in renewed vitality and victory. Explore remedies for your situation. Who can you turn to for help and accountability? Journal your feelings, scriptures, revelation, and prayer as you rest in God’s presence. 

Scripture References: Psalm 31, 46:10; Matthew 7:7-8; Romans 8:11

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One comment on “Empty and Exhausted”

  1. Paula Anderson
    May 28, 2024 at 5:42 am

    Love how David encourages himself , his expression of human feelings of being overwhelmed and undone. David cried out unto God his strength and savior in the midst of sorrow.
    Maryann you’ ve hit the “nail on the head” with this writing. ” Empty and Exhausted”yes I can so relate. A little old song chorus comes to mind…….”Fiil my cup Lord. I lift it up Lord. Come and quench this thirsting of my soul. Bread
    of heaven feed me till I want no more. Here’s my cup, fill it up, and make me whole.”
    Oh sisters! I think I need more than a tiny little tea cup to be filled. I think I need several pitchers and vessels for God to fill me up. God is so good. I want him to fill me to overflowing!
    Thank you both for such inspirational writings and videos. So good!

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