How many times have I answered the question "How are you?" with "Man, I'm just WORN OUT." You too? Yeah, that's what I thought. :-)
Why are we all so exhausted? Why do we feel depleted most days?
"Since idolatry is expecting something other than God to give you what only God can give, you end up having to depend on yourself and your own efforts to produce something only God can produce. In essence, you're playing God, and that's exhausting." - pg 11
Yep. I'm guilty. I've tried to play God. Take over His job. Be the one "in charge". It's kind of laughable when I really step back and think about it, but I've done it over and over again. I think it's because, as Pete points out in the book, many of our idols today --- the empty promises-- in our culture today involve performance.
Are you tired of:
---trying to keep the perfect house?
---striving to have the perfect marriage?
---looking like you have it all together?
---feeling the pressure to look like you just walked out of a magazine?
---struggling to raise perfect kids who excel academically and socially AND can crush a T-ball over the fence?
---working to make more money than everyone else in your circle?
---attempting to climb the ladder faster than the guy who's right on your heels?
"The performance-driven lifestyle in just another form of idolatry, and it will eventually leave you exhausted, bitter, and ready to give up." - pg 12
We all feel the pressure to perform. And when our "performance" gets noticed by others, we feel accomplished. Accepted. Validated. --- for awhile. But then we just feel the need to put on another performance. And this time it needs to be bigger and better. It's a vicious cycle that would exhaust anyone. I've definitely "been there, done that". And it got me nowhere.
Thankfully there is a way to live that replenishes our souls instead of depleting them. A way that gives life instead of inducing stress.
"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." - Matthew 11:28
Seems simple enough, right? Let God be God, and all you have to do is be the you that God made you to be. That oughta be a piece of cake! --- Uh, no. At least not for me.
Although I KNOW the truth, I still feel myself tempted to "go there". I'm tempted every single day to let my performance determine my worth. I have to make a deliberate decision each day to hand over the task of "being God" over to the only one who actually does that job well.
What about you? Are you feeling depleted these days? Are you trying to control too much and do God's job?
Please tell me I'm not the only one... :-)