If there’s one feeling a lot of people are expressing these days, it’s that they feel exhausted. Whether it’s from decision fatigue about school-aged kids going back to school, to sports, and to events, or fear, or just the overlying feeling of stress due to financial hardships, loss of loved ones or otherwise, many of us are exhausted.
It’s a bit ironic considering we’re doing “less” by staying home more.
Physically, we might be doing less. But our minds seem to be working double-time. There are a lot of emotions from anger to confusion to oppression. There’s more stress about lives being upended. About futures seeming less certain.
But take heart. God is still in control. Here are 5 verses He gives us when we feel exhausted. You can meditate on these, and you can rest in Him.
“For who is God besides the Lord? And who is the Rock except our God? It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure.” -Psalms 18:31-32
“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” –Isaiah 40:28-31
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” –Matthew 11:28-29
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” -John 14:27
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” -Philippians 4:6-7
Of course, we will face stressful situations in our lives. This world isn’t easy.
However, our current situation may feel more overwhelming stressful than normal. And if stress continuing in your life chronically, it can affect your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. More stress means more cortisol in our bloodstream, especially when we feel exhausted by it.
Cortisol is a hormone that’s released by the adrenal glands when the body faces stress. In modern times, this stress is often more mental than physical and usually has no outlet. For many, it’s chronic. It builds. And it does damage.
In fact, one 2018 study found that increased blood cortisol levels were correlated with impaired memory and lower brain volume in mid-life (1). What’s more, after studying 2231 human participants, researchers found the effects were more pronounced in women participants than men.
High blood cortisol levels are also correlated with weight gain and impaired loss, increased blood pressure, negative impacts on mood, sleep and energy, and an increased incidence of diabetes and heart disease (2). And as stated above, potentially lower brain volume and memory issues.
Thankfully, God can give us rest and relief if we seek Him.
Much of the time, we want to “do something about it” when we are out of sorts. And, much of what we do is good. When we’re stressed, we might start a gratitude journal, talk with friends, or spend time with loved ones – and these are all great!
But, if you feel exhausted, it’s okay to just rest in the Lord. He invites us to. He knows our fatigue, and it’s in this fatigue that He can be our full strength.
If you feel exhausted and emotionally and mentally spent, take time today to find peace in God. He’s ready for you, for your worries, and for your troubles. Rest in Him.