It seems that there are some really important truths that can only be experienced in a place of weakness and frailty. Frankly that sucks, but there it is. I have been recently experiencing what feels like some early signs of burn out. Whatever it is I have come to a place where I feel utterly spent and empty. There have been days recently when the only way I have managed to get myself up and going in the morning was by telling myself that I’d be back in bed at the end of the day!
The other day I opened up my home for friends to stay the night and others to join us for the day. I place a high value on the people in my life, my relationships are my main source of motivation. However, as an introvert, interacting with people takes energy, and right now I don’t have much! Usually I would enjoy buzzing round and getting things ready and chit-chatting with my guests. This time I couldn’t do any of it. I felt guilty and ashamed. Yet like an orange being squeezed beyond its last drop of juice, I was almost in pain having a house full of guests. I know it sounds ridiculous, but there it is! My guests had no clue, they probably just thought I was having an off day and not being so hospitable. To get through the day it took a phone call and texts from a close friend who knew what was going on and was praying.
Later as I processed all this with God, I remembered the widow’s mite. My hospitality may not have measured up to my standards, and to others it may well have seemed nonexistent. But like the widow, I am pretty sure I gave everything I had in that moment and I am begining to realise that’s what Jesus looks for and notices. I am experiencing a new aspect of grace that challenges me not to see my offering as inadequate but as precious, complete and welcomed by the Father.
Sometimes we can do good things really well and look pretty impressive in all the right ways, but there are other moments when we give absolutely everything we have and something eternal takes place. I had forgotten that when we are down to our last drop, things often don’t look polished and complete, in fact they can look pretty frail… and that’s OK.