It’s Gone Rain on Yo’ Head!

color purple-rain on your head
The Color Purple: It’s gon’ rain on yo’ head!

But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. (Philippians 2:17)

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)

Bone tired. Weary. These past few weeks have been mentally draining, but rewarding, full of ups and downs. I’ve ridden a roller coaster of emotions from utmost despair to life-giving hope. I’m exhausted. My faith in the concept of an Open Heaven was put to the test, recently, with the hospitalization of my mother. I thought of the story of Hezekiah when I asked God for more time with MaDear. Surely this is a small thing for you, Lord! God granted my request and I am so thankful! But after a week of watching over her, culminating in an overnight stay, my own life suffered from neglect. Even as issues came up while I was tending to my mom, I regarded them with Scarlett O’Hara disdain: I won’t think about that now. I’ll think about that tomorrow!

So a week’s worth of I’ll-do-it-tomorrows, fires that needed putting out YESTERDAY and things that required my immediate attention were delayed until that crisis was over. And I’d do it again. No THING was as important as what I was doing at that moment, no place so dire that it required my presence. My mom needed me and I needed to be with her. These other things were important, just not as high in priority. Then came the day of reckoning, when it all caught up to me. Wave after wave of actions I could no longer put off overwhelmed me. To be fair, some of it was my fault due to my own habit of procrastination.

Moments of joy also snuck into the dilemmas – I attended a business expo where I debuted a copy of Immaculate and had a meeting with a woman of some standing regarding the original book, Touched. Picture me tagging along in the footsteps of said woman (the wife of a prominent dignitary) looking the picture of the ingénue. Kinda like Emma Stone’s character in The Help or Anne Hathaway in The Devil Wears Prada – you know, the all too green girl who’s brand new to the scene. I took it all in with a sense of wonder. I was among greatness! But I wasn’t too surprised, after all, the Bible does promise that is where my gifts will take me. Still, I just hope my eyes weren’t too big, LOL!

This created an odd mixture of highs and lows as both aforementioned events occurred on the same day and I had to squeeze in a visit to my mom in between. My sister fell sick after she’d stayed up all night providing confections for my presentation at the expo. She made cake pops that looked like tiny books with my cover on them! Super talented, that one is. I had to return to the hospital and finish out her shift. Whew! But I didn’t give in. I kept going until the important things were taken care of.

It was only afterwards that I succumbed. After my mom was released from the hospital and doing well, after I’d taken care of all the necessary things that claimed my attention. I woke yesterday morning feeling out of sorts, blah, troubled in my spirit. Didn’t even know why. Couldn’t quite put my finger on it. I’ve learned, though, that feelings are fickle. Can’t trust ‘em because they may vary from minute to minute. I ate breakfast as my stomach did flips. Drank my coffee and still was not eased. Then I decided to ride it out and just wait ‘til the feeling passed. I took a nap. Woke up feeling better and had more of a handle on what I was experiencing. My throat felt like it had a small lump on the inside when I swallowed, an indication of the onset of something allergy or virus related. And there I had it, I realized. I was worn down, nearly sick physically but too busy to take note. My body was slowly shutting down, forcing me to get what I needed, the rest I would not take but for physical limitations.

Have you ever felt like you’ve given your all, your absolute all – done the very best you can do and worn yourself down to a nub? A question I’ve often asked myself is, where do you go when you’ve emptied your cup? Who or what fills you back up to capacity so that you can get back at it again? Father, I’m so glad that when troubles come my way, when they pile up on my head, when the enemy comes against me like a flood, YOU will lift up a standard against him (Isaiah 59:19). David, that great psalmist, was able to declare after he had been run to the ground by Saul and his enemies: YOU restore my soul so that my cup runneth over! Elijah, after outrunning King Ahab’s chariot, soon found himself on the run from Queen Jezebel. But an angel caught up with Elijah and provided sustenance to strengthen him for the journey ahead. So when I pour myself out and sacrifice myself in service, I can be assured there will be a refill and restoration.

Thank you, Lord, that you know my limits. You know when I have poured myself out and given all I can to my family and my ministry. You know when I am at the end of my rope. I can trust You to make sure I get the rest I need and the peace for my soul. You fill my cup again and again, until it overflows.

Be forever blessed,

Loria

8 Responses

  1. Melanie

    Yes, I do! I have fallen victim to overexertion many, many times, and all for family. This usually happens about 7-10 times a year with recurring birthdays and holidays. I don’t think anything of it; not sleeping or eating a full meal while working. My drive is envisioning how much happiness my time and effort will bring. After each fall, I am confined to my bed and just can not move. Once rejuvenated I have this energy that I never thought existed. I start seeking the next project only to burn out my candle again. I think I’m an engine that can run without oil, a stove that can cook without gas, and pen that can make a mark without ink, and I’m fine with that, they all produce something just not what is normally expected. Of late, I have been resting more staying off my feet and out of my shoes and it has made a difference in my day to day stamina. I’ve also noticed that I am a focused worker. I can’t work on several projects efficiently. Its that one thing in that moment that keeps me going, engaged, interested, and seeking perfection. Right now that one thing is progressing my family so its highly likely I will get burnt out again. But, that’s Ok. When its time, my body will tap me on the shoulder and remind to take care of self.

    • loriaboyle

      Melanie, I was smiling the entire time I read this because I know your focus and dedication! You are like a dynamo and a wonder to behold. Anyone who has seen your work can attest to your drive – WOW! I get tired just thinking of all you do but you make it look easy. I know you often push yourself like you have no limits. I’m so glad you’re on my team and feel sorry for anyone who doesn’t have their own Melanie! You are invaluable and many times leave me shaking my head at the things you’re able to accomplish. Having said that, I’m also happy to hear that you’re listening to your body’s demands to slow down, even if only a little. But a slower version of you is still a bit of a wonder woman 😉 Take good care of yourself!

  2. Lida Roudez

    Hey Loria. I often tell people, you’re no good to anyone else if you Dont take care of yourself. Time n time again, I find myself having to take time out for myself. When you are a mother, wife, daughter, sister, aunt, friend, n child of God, even I get overwhelmed. I don’t or try not to complain, I just slow my butt down. I rest. I go to the movie by myself. I find simple things to do with my Love ones, or just do nothing. Before you know it, I’m up n running again. The Lord is the strength of my life. I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me.

    • loriaboyle

      He is, and I can, Lida! It’s not easy to do always but it’s sometimes NECESSARY to take a breather! I was just telling my sister the story of the time I went to the dollar store and saw a beautiful journal. It had strawberries all over and was very glossy and hard bound. I debated with myself for a long time over getting that beautifully bound book versus a plain spiral notebook until I realized: THEY’RE BOTH A DOLLAR! I was so used to taking care of others and short changing myself.

  3. Geneen

    Man O Man, I can surely relate to this. I’m learning to put myself first. After so long, I have grown accustomed to “no I really dont need that, I’ll get/do that for me next time, maybe I’ll buy me this AFTER I get him/her that thing, or how can I do this w/out doing that for them!” etc. etc. Smh! To actually hear myself speak these words as I type makes me feel even worse because I KNOW better. I have to STOP IT!!!! If I am not at my best, there is no way I can be my best for others. Great “WAKE UP” read with this blog. Thank you!

    Big Hugs and Kisses to Madear and you!

    • loriaboyle

      Thanks Geneen! Madear is doing well, praise God! So well, in fact, that she is inspiring me to take better care of myself 🙂 I love what you said: if you’re not at YOUR best, how can you be at your best for others? It’s better to be able to give, I’m learning, out of our abundance when we can – with the understanding that is not always possible, lol! Otherwise, we just wind up running on fumes in an empty tank until that, too, it’s eventually gone.

  4. j.george29@yahoo.com

    We must remember in times like these is, we can’t but the LORD can.and, HE know’s how much we can bare.for I will never leave you or forsake you.

    • loriaboyle

      Yes George I no longer count on what I can do because I have a limit. His strength is without limits. With God, I CANNOT fail!

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