This is the final installment in my series on Stress-Free Living! This year, we’re approaching the Holidays with a different attitude – not one of worry and stress, but one of peace and gratitude! With God’s help, we can do this! If you’re new to the series, you can find the other posts here.
The boy had been walking for 36 hours in the cold rain and was exhausted. He tried to find a place to spend the night, only to be turned away because of his skin color. Tired, cold and hungry, he found the only refuge he could: a small hole in the wooden sidewalk. The hollow beneath the sidewalk was warmer and dry, so the boy was finally able to rest.
While he laid there under the sidewalk, he listened to the passers-by walking unknowingly on top of him. He wondered where they were going, what they were thinking. Did they have families close by? Did they have a boy his age? What were they going to have for dinner? After awhile, the boy began to pray. Although many people would have considered his shelter repulsive, Booker T. Washington had much to thank God for. He laid there and thanked God for this shelter, his opportunity to get to school and get an education, and for the strength to get there.
He didn’t know it at the time, but someday he would become one of the greatest men who ever lived. Never forgetting where he came from, Dr. Washington devoted his life to helping his fellow African Americans live successfully.
Are you approaching this Christmas tired and exhausted? Do you feel that you simply cannot go another step? Are you weary of the perpetual rush of people hurrying about to finish up their last-minute shopping? Do what Booker T. Washington did – find the nearest hole and go and pray.
In 1 Peter 5:7, the Bible says, “Casting all your care upon him, for he careth for you.”
One of my most favorite poem is found in the book, Streams in the Desert, by Mrs. Cowman. Not surprisingly, it is for December 23, right before Christmas:
I’m too tired to trust and too tired to pray,
Said one, as the over-taxed strength gave way.
The one conscious thought by my mind possessed,
Is, oh, could I just drop it all and rest.
Will God forgive me, do you suppose,
If I go right to sleep as a baby goes,
Without an asking if I may,
Without every trying to trust and pray?
Will God forgive you? why think, dear heart,
When language to you was an unknown art,
Did a mother deny you needed rest,
Or refuse to pillow your head on her breast?
Did she let you want when you could not ask?
Did she set her child an unequal task?
Or did she cradle you in her arms,
And then guard your slumber against alarms?
Ah, how quick was her mother love to see,
The unconscious yearnings of infancy.
When you’ve grown too tired to trust and pray,
When over-wrought nature has quite given way:
Then just drop it all, and give up to rest,
As you used to do on a mother’s breast,
He knows all about it—the dear Lord knows,
So just go to sleep as a baby goes;
Without even asking if you may,
God knows when His child is too tired to pray.
He judges not solely by uttered prayer,
He knows when the yearnings of love are there.
He knows you do pray, He knows you do trust,
And He knows, too, the limits of poor, weak dust.
Oh, the wonderful sympathy of Christ,
For His chosen ones in that midnight tryst,
When He bade them sleep and take their rest,
While on Him the guilt of the whole world pressed—
You’ve given your life up to Him to keep,
Then don’t be afraid to go right to sleep.
– by Ella Conrad Cowherd, from Streams in the Desert
Oh, how many times these verses comforted me in my mother-exhaustion! How many times my overwhelmed spirit found solace in these words. So you, too, my friend, can find rest in the arms of an understanding Savior when you’re overwhelmed.
So when you find yourself tired, exhausted and stressed, find a hole and go pray. But if you’re too tired to pray, find a hole and rest in the Arms of Jesus.
Question: What are some ways you handle stress?
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Linking up with: Monday: Moms the Word, and Happy Wives Club Tuesday: Titus Two Tuesdays, Mercy Ink Blog, The TimeWarp Wife, Messy Marriage Wednesday: To Love Honor and Vacuum