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Sermon Illustrations on Exhaustion

Sermon Illustrations on Exhaustion

Overextending Ourselves & The Tyranny of the Urgent

In his highly insightful work, Inside Job, Stephen W. Smith shares the importance of finding balance, even as life seems to pull us in different directions:

Overextending yourself is stretching your physical, emotional, financial, vocational and relational boundaries to the point of depletion. Have you ever heard the expression someone says when the money is running tight? It goes like this: “There’s too much month left at the end of the money.”

Translated this means, “I’ve run out of money to pay all my bills and it’s only the middle of the month.” That’s what happens when we overextend ourselves; there’s more asked of us than we can give. This overextending causes stress to accumulate: the stress at home, in the workplace, during travel—it all piles up like a huge stack of dirty laundry.

Stress, as we all know, is deadly to our health.

Every doctor and therapist will tell you that unresolved stress will “do you in.” Stress works itself out through our blood pressure and attacks our vital organs. Stress releases a toxin that when built up leaves its marks inside of us. We live with a tyranny of the urgent that drives us, manipulates us and sucks passion right out of our marrow and veins. Everything must be done now. Everything has to be quick.

Taken from Inside Job by Stephen W. Smith (c) 2009 by Stephen W. Smith. Published by InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL. www.ivpress.com

The Sacred Alters of Modern Life

Our 24/7 culture conveniently provides every good and service we want, when we want, how we want. Our time – saving devices, technological conveniences, and cheap mobility have seemingly made life much easier and interconnected. As a result, we have more information at our fingertips than anyone in history.

Yet with all this progress, we are ominously dissatisfied. In bowing at these sacred altars of hyperactivity, progress, and technological compulsivity, our souls increasingly pant for meaning and value and truth as they wither away, exhausted, frazzled, displeased, ever on edge. The result is a hollow culture that, in Paul’s words, is “ever learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth” (2Tim.3:7) — increasingly so.

Subversive Sabbath: The Surprising Power of Rest in a Nonstop World, Baker Publishing Group, 2018.

 

What Are You Going To Be When You Grow Up?

A photographer was snapping pictures of first graders at an elementary school, making small talk to put his subjects at ease.

“What are you going to be when you grow up?” he asked one little girl.

“Tired,” she said.

J.R. Love, Rushton, Louisiana

What We Love to Do & How We Love to Be

In his highly insightful work, Inside Job, Stephen W. Smith shares insights on the topic of rest from the poet David Whyte:

[The] poet David Whyte opens our minds and hearts to rest when he writes: Rest is the conversation between what we love to do and how we love to be. Rest is the essence of giving and receiving. Rest is an act of remembering, imaginatively and intellectually but also physiologically and physically.

To rest is to give up on the already exhausted will as the prime motivator of endeavor, with its endless outward need to reward itself through established goals. To rest is to give up on worrying and fretting and the sense that there is something wrong with the world unless we put it right; to rest is to fall back literally or figuratively from outer targets and shift the goal not to an inner bulls eye, an imagined state of perfect stillness, but to an inner state of natural exchange.

Taken from Inside Job by Stephen W. Smith (c) 2009 by Stephen W. Smith. Published by InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL. www.ivpress.com

See also Burnout, Busyness, Hurry

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