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  • mendezr

Worn Out

And when Moses' father in law saw all that he did to (for) the people, he said, What is this thing that thou doest to (for) the people? why sittest thou thyself alone, and all the people stand by (before) thee from morning unto even? And Moses said unto his father in law, Because the people come unto me to enquire of God: When they have a matter, they come unto me; and I judge between one and another, and I do make them know the statutes of God, and his laws. And Moses' father in law said unto him, The thing that thou doest is not good. Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone” Exodus 18:14-18


In the final semester of my undergraduate degree program, I was also working a full-time job, completing an internship, and had some ministry duties as well. My day started at 7:00am at the County Attorney’s Office for my internship, after which I left to go to school for my 12:15pm class, and after school, I headed straight to work to get there by 3:00pm. My work shift ended at 11:30pm if I got out on time, and I would get home a little past midnight. I would try to fall asleep by 1:00am, but I had a little two-year-old son who was nocturnal and seemed always ready to play like a puppy from the pet store. My alarm would go off at 6am, like an unwatchable version of “Groundhog Day”. I would saunter out of bed to start my day all over again, and it felt like the longest semester ever.


Rebekah was faithful to make me a peanut butter and jelly sandwich that I could eat while on my way to school from my internship. She would sometimes make me two sandwiches so I could save one for dinner, but I usually devoured both of them at lunch, and I figured I would worry about dinner when dinner came. I would carry my school notes with me to study while I rode the elevator or walked from one location to another. I tried to take advantage of every moment as I did not have any spare time when I could kick my feet up after a long day at work. The weeks passed by and I was worn out, but I kept pressing on as I could see the finish line. I wanted to finish school before Kate was born, so I loaded my schedule so I could be done with my degree by December.


I survived that time in my life, and I passed my internship and my classes. The boss at the County Attorney’s Office gave me a $5 gift card as a thank you for all my work as an intern, and I felt like a kid who got coal for Christmas. I wanted to scream at her that I did not miss even one day of work, and I dragged my exhausted carcass in even on days when I felt like taking a personal day. I made so many copies that I should have bought stock in Xerox as I worked that machine like it had never been worked before. All these thoughts raced through my mind in the mere seconds of opening my “thank you” card, but I knew it was better to just say thank you and walk away. I did finish my schooling in December, and thankfully, I was able to walk across the platform and accept my diploma. I was only able to survive because of those in my life who helped me along the way. First and foremost, God gave me the strength and perseverance to endure the longs days. I had a wife who endured my grouchiness, and was faithful to encourage me and make me peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. My mother-in law watched our rascal son. My parents encouraged me and fronted me the money so that I could go to school, and I worked to pass so I could pay them back. Life was hectic for several months, but my burdens were eased by the prayers and helping hands of others.


There is a Chinese proverb that translates to "Many hands make light work.” Moses was working every day from morning to evening, and he did not have a “closed” sign for his tent. He was working to serve and lead the people, but his father in-law knew he would not be able to keep up with that demanding pace, and he also knew that Moses would eventually wear out and be of no use to anybody. Moses thought he was doing a good thing for the people, but Jethro knew it was not the best thing for Moses or for the people he was leading. He knew the burden was too heavy, and that Moses would soon collapse under the pressure of judging such a great number of people. There was no Chinese proverb in his day, but instead a wise father in-law who was able to step back and make an accurate evaluation based on what he saw. Moses was wise to listen, and he came to know that it is impossible to do such a great thing on one’s own.


Where are you today friend? Are you carrying a heavy load? Do you find yourself perplexed and troubled as you try to handle life’s problems on your own, and in your own strength? Matthew 11:28-30 states, "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Are you trying to carry the burden on your own? Are you rejecting help because you are too proud? Psalm‬ ‭55:22 instructs us what to do with our burdens, “Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer (permit) the righteous to be moved.”


Do you find yourself too busy for the things God would have you to do? Have you allowed other priorities to get into the way of spiritual priorities? It is never time wasted when you step away and take time to sharpen your axe. May we be sharpened with the Word of God which is quick and powerful, and may we go to God for every moment of our life as we can do nothing without Him. Will you wear away or will you draw close and take the help God has given you? We can do nothing alone, but with Him all things are possible. Luke 1:37 states, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.”


Stay in the fight!

Saso


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