Today, I was “slapped up side of the face” with a truth that I’m prone to share with others, but evidently not so good with following it myself. Things have been tough these last few months. 2020 has not been a kind year so far, has it? We have all gone to a great extent to take care of others. Still now, we take our temps every time we walk in the office – trying to make sure that we don’t infect someone else. We carry our dinners home to eat, we practice social distancing in the check-out line, and we sit far apart at church. I’ve spent hours praying for my family and those who caught the Coronavirus, worrying about those who have lost their jobs, and concerned those “front-line workers.” Who did I leave out? Oh – Me! I’ve been so busy taking care of others, that I’ve forgotten to take care of myself! And I know better! I’m fond of reminding folks that when you get on an airplane and there is an emergency, they tell you that if you have a child with you, put the mask on yourself first and then put the mask on the child. You cannot help others, if you’re passed out. Knowing this is one thing – preaching it is another – but actually putting your needs above others doesn’t come easy to me. As a Mom, I try to take care of my family. As a preacher’s wife, I want to take care of our church family. As a supervisor at work, I want to take care of my team and when they struggle, I struggle. When they hurt, I hurt. These concerns slowly build up – resulting in insomnia (Yes, I’ve woken up in the recliner with my glasses on and the computer open in my lap! Who knows what will be in the mail! LOL!) But, then also comes the headache. It’s rough, but I’m tough, right?
Well, all of a sudden today, I snapped over the silliest thing. It was like I had reached my limit and I started crying. Now, some folks may “whimper” or “snivel”, but when I start “crying,” I can’t stop. And it’s not pretty! I have to keep blowing my nose and wiping my eyes – I look horrible! My poor co-workers were gracious enough to let me come home early. I went straight to bed and slept for quite a while, waking up, asking myself – “What in the world happened today?” Why could I not handle things today?
Jesus had those days when He couldn’t even walk without someone reaching out to grab onto the hem of his garment (Mark 5:27). The woman with the issue of blood did this as Jesus was traveling with a crowd to go home with Jairus, who’s daughter was gravely ill and Jesus ended up raising her from the dead. The next week was spent preaching, casting out many devils, and anointing with oil many that were sick, and healing them” (Mark 6:13). Then came the news that Herod had beheaded his cousin, John the Baptist. At this news, Jesus told His disciples that they all needed to go out into the desert place and rest a while. The crowds saw them trying to get away and they followed them. The next day is when he feeds the five thousand men, plus women and children with a child’s lunch of five loaves and two fishes. Finally, his disciples got into a ship and He sent the people away, while He went up into the mountain to pray. Jesus knew that He couldn’t take care of others unless He took care of Himself.
Today, I was once again reminded that I’m only human. I can physically, mentally, and emotionally handle just so much at a time. Only when I take care of myself, will I be able to be what I need to be. I hope that you will stand up, take a break, and remember how special you are. Now, if I can just get rid of this headache! Simply blessed, Courtney