How to Stop Burnout When You Can’t Slow Down

Let me get right to the point. You can be fully busy and fully at rest at the same time.  Yes. I know it doesn’t make sense so hear me out. 

For so many of us, our schedules and daily living come jam packed with To Dos and Must Dos and Gotta Be Somewheres. I won’t list all of the ways because your head and calendar are full of them already. I know that mine are.  

But, when we invite the Lord into our busy-ness or to be more accurate when we recognize His presence is already there with us, we receive His rest and peace. We can stop burnout, even when we can’t slow down to physically rest. The Lord gives us breathing space when we thought we had none, regardless of our booked calendars and overflowing To Do lists. 

The Lord Went with Moses 

I love reading the conversations that Moses had with the Lord in Exodus. If you want to talk about a busy schedule, we can talk about Moses’ To Dos. He had an entire nation of people looking to him to lead them. They didn’t listen really well. They argued with each other. They kept forgetting all that God had done for them and going back to their old ways and old gods. They complained a lot and all of this created more work for Moses. Exodus 33:12-14 reads: 

Moses said to the Lord, “You have been telling me, ‘Lead these people,’ but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. You have said, ‘I know you by name and you have found favor with me.’ If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people.” 

The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” 

The NLT version puts it this way: “I will personally go with you, Moses, and I will give you rest.” 

God didn’t invite Moses to go away with Him and rest like Jesus did with His disciples. God didn’t bring Moses water, bake him bread, create space for him to sleep like He later did Eliajah (1 Kings 19:6). Instead, He promised to go with Moses and give him rest during his busy-ness. God’s presence gave Moses rest while he did the work God called him to do. 

The Lord Goes with You 

The Lord wants to personally go with you, too. 

Every day. 

Right into your busy. 

The Presence of God means rest and peace in life. However, so often we simply go through the motions and don’t step fully into His presence, especially when we are busy doing the work He calls us to do. We fall for the lie that we have too much to do. So many of us at times walk all around God’s presence. We do the right things. We serve in the right places. We tithe to our church. We sponsor children in need. We attend church weekly whether online or in person. We listen to Christian music. We have scripture up in our homes. 

We are in the right room and that room is full of light, because the Lord is there. But, stepping into the presence of God and accepting the rest that follows is our choice that takes a slight shift in thinking.   

The Lord actually taught me this lesson through my dog. Have you ever thought you were in a room full of sunlight and then noticed that patch of sunlight that seems brighter and warmer than the rest of the room. Our pup loves to sleep there. When she rests there, I see how much more light she rests in. I thought I was in a sunlit room but seeing her there I noticed I was actually sitting in the dark by comparison. Laying down in that sunny spot is the difference between resting near the Father and resting IN the Father. The difference between the motions of rest and entering into the holiness of rest. The difference in being near the presence of God and recognizing that the presence of God leads you into rest and peace. But, the Lord leaves the choice up to us.  

I pray that you will choose to see that the Presence of God goes with you and gives you rest, even on those days or in those seasons where you can’t slow down. I pray that you choose to step fully into His light and receive His gift of rest. 

As a writer and speaker, Lisa’s heart beats for encouraging women, supporting parents in their role as a child’s first and best teacher, and pointing people to Jesus. Lisa lives in north Atlanta, with her husband of 25+ years, Clay, and their two daughters, Emerson and Ellery.  To learn more, follow Lisa on Instagram, visit her website or order her devotional, Simplifying Rest.

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