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Just Plain Tired

Just Plain Tired

Have you ever been tired...really tired? I am talking about the kind of tired you feel when you just can’t find space in your life to relax and turn it off. The kind of tired you get when you’ve worked your job day after day under stress with no day off in sight; the kind of tired you feel when you have to go night after night and week after week without real sleep; the kind of tired you feel when you spend month after month devoting your mental energy to a financial worry, a health worry, a relationship worry, a major decision, or a deep concern about the future in general. I am talking about the kind of tired you get when the weight of life has pressed so firmly for so long that you are just done with it all. Sometimes our search for resolve, peace, and rest can begin to overshadow the very concerns that made us tired to start with. If we are honest, we have all spent time feeling the weight of real tiredness press on our being.

King David experienced this kind of tiredness often in his life. One of his most exhausting seasons came when his son Absalom created great civil unrest through the kingdom. David’s own son had created so much drama and uprising that there was a civil war between David’s kingdom and his son Absalom’s rebellion. The battle ended with the death of 20,000 men as well as the hanging and spearing of David’s own son Absalom, the leader of the rebellion. David was left with a shattered kingdom filled with drama, a split in his family, and a dead son whom he still deeply loved even though he had rebelled against his own father's kingdom.

David knew anguish. He knew the pain of disloyalty from those closest to him. David understood the restless tiredness that comes from sleepless nights trying to sift through his thoughts. David was walking through the darkest of valleys. It is commonly thought probable that it was during this time that David wrote the 23rd Psalm.

David clearly understood tiredness when he turned his eyes to the Lord and began to rest. I can imagine his conflict and tension beginning to dissipate as he began to relinquish control by acknowledging that he was not even the slightest bit in charge of his own life or his battles. David paints a vivid picture in only a few words. Allow me to expound for emphasis.

“The Lord is my shepherd”; He is THE Lord. He IS, meaning currently active. He is my SHEPHERD, a personal caretaker who provides, guides, and protects.

“I have all that I need.” We need nothing more than Christ...Nothing!!!

“He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams.” God usually doesn’t force us much. The translation here is that he provides well provisioned resting places when we look and take the opportunity to see his place/s of rest.

“He renews my strength.” David recognized that He (God) promises to renew us. Christ can renew us daily but we must rest, stop, pause, be still and trust in him for the renewal. Often, we are being renewed when we don’t notice.

“He guides me along right paths bringing honor to his name.” God’s entire creation was accomplished to bring praise, glory, and honor to himself. We, as part of that creation, if surrendered to Christ as our daily guide bring honor to his Holy name. It is when we see ourselves as the controller of our own life that we end up dishonoring the God who made us to reflect his honor and glory.

“Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.” David likely wrote this in one of the darkest valleys of his life. Our life, every life, will have deep, dark valleys. We must walk through them with trust and obedience even when we don’t sense or feel God’s presence. He is close beside us. Sometimes we simply rely on this truth.

Psalm 23:1-4 (NLT)
“The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths bringing honor to his name. Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.”

Eric Bowman


Eric Bowman ovalEric is our associate pastor, working with outreach and youth ministry as well as adult discipleship and growth. Eric retired from a 28-year career in public education as a high school band director in 2019 and is now living his lifelong dream as a pastor. Eric and his wife, Diana, continue to live in Henry County where they have been lifetime residents. They "raised" three children and are now making their best attempt at "raising" themselves.


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