What does it mean to be weary?
I had to look it up. Not that I didn’t know what it meant but because I wanted a clearer picture for the word.
- weary – to be physically or mentally exhausted by hard work, exertion, strain
I feel weary.
A full blown “I don’t feel good, this season of life is hard and I’m feeling farther out in the deep than I’ve ever felt before” kind of weary.
Stretched in ways I never dreamed.
Way outside the borders of my known abilities.
Weary. And, in times when I feel weary, I seek out verses to help me through. Verses that will guide my heart, encourage my soul and speak truth to my human nature.
Isaiah 43 is full of amazing verses. Verses that speak truth, hope and the greatness of God. In fact, my favorite passage of scripture is found in Isaiah 43:1-3. A perfect “I feel weary.” go to passage of scripture.
But, in reading through this chapter, another verse spoke that I hadn’t noticed before. The verse was Isaiah 43:22.
“…you have not wearied yourselves for me, O Israel.”
It felt highlighted to my eyes because of the word weary.
I thought… “Yes, yes… God, I am. I am wearying myself right now. And this is awful. I’m sick. I’m exhausted. I’m fully weary, head to toe. And you WANT me here?”
Which caused me to take a good look at being weary. Why would God want me here? Why would he tell Israel that they weren’t weary for Him?
And, I felt the Holy Spirit sweetly whisper, “Because we can walk this together. I am with you. I will be your strength. I will help you today. There is power in weakness.”
Full blown weariness does something to your brain. It forces you to look outside yourself for strength. Weariness forces you to hold tight to faith, hope and trust. Weariness gives you no choice but to believe that God is holding you up.
Weariness brings you to a place of full surrender, of humbleness, of neediness that you wouldn’t otherwise know.
And God WANTS me to weary myself? He wants me to be here?
I had to read the verse again. Yes. He does want a certain weariness for us all. Weariness that shows we are giving our all and weariness that develops us a true need for Him, for the greatness of who He is in our times of need.
Remember, there is power in weakness.
Of course, my head knows this to be true. I know that God requires our ALL. He desires our whole selves to be pushed to the limits for the cause of the gospel. He wants warriors in the Kingdom who will work until their dying breath for the sake of His Name.
We know that if we do that, it will be exhausting, wearying… being in the battle is physically, mentally, spiritually and relationally engaging in a way that will bring about whole body/mind/soul weariness.
The battle will bring you to that place of full surrender faster than anything.
A place of complete need for God to move and help in ways that ONLY our God can do. A weariness that demands God’s strength to step in so we are able to continue.
Then verse 24 says, “…but you have burdened me with your sins and wearied me with your offenses.”
Ouch. So God was telling Israel that they tend to forget about wearying themselves for God but quite often live in a state of wearying God with their many sins, bad habits, ungodly tendencies and all around self-sufficiency?
When Isaiah wrote this to Israel, the people were not relying on God for anything. They were refusing to give up their spiritual rebellion and were wearying God with their sin.
They were not weary FOR God rather they were weary TO God.
Yet, God was calling them to stop wearying Him and to start wearying themselves for God. He was calling them to change and repentance.
The same call, same question, same challenge is posed also to us.
Basically, when was the last time we wearied ourselves in service to Him?
Or, do we just weary the heart of God with our sins and offenses?
Are we willing to live weary for the gospel? Are we willing to be weary?
We have to ask these questions daily. When we sense a self-sufficiency, a work in our own strength, a season of ease… we need to wonder, are we willing to be weary?
Are we willing to weary ourselves for God?