rebelling against low expectations

To the Exhausted, Weary Rebelutionary: There’s Strength for Your Weakness


Your head rests on your desk. Bags under your eyes indicate lack of sleep. Tears spill out of your closed eyelids, and for a moment, all you can think about is your exhaustion. You’re so tired you can barely function.

Whether it’s due to stress, anxiety, or illness, exhaustion is a heavy enemy. We fight it, but eventually, it overtakes us, hurting us and the people in our lives.

Your life is so busy, and you’ve tried to simplify your schedule. But between relationships, doctor appointments, school, and other responsibilities, the only “busy” in your life is a necessary busy.

If you’ve already weeded out some of the optional things in your life and still feel exhausted, you know it’s more than a busy life that’s your problem. Your burnout stems from something deeper.

You close your eyes, and sleep overtakes you. You dream of peaceful days when your head wasn’t constantly throbbing, and everyone wasn’t continually asking if you’re okay.

But then you wake up, unwillingly transported back to reality. Because you’re still exhausted. Still burnt out.

Friend, I’ve been there. We’ve all been there, some more often than others.

Here are three remedies for when you’re beyond exhausted and soul weary.

1. Spend Time with God

In Psalm 119:25, ESV, the psalmist laments, “My soul clings to the dust; give me life according to Your word!”

Many of us can sympathize with that statement. We feel poured out to our very most, with nothing more to give.

But the psalmist offers a solution—”…give me life according to Your word!”

We need to be honest with ourselves. In our lowest of lows, are we being intentional in spending time with God? Finding life, as the psalmist does, in God’s Word? Or do we turn to false “cures” rather than God?

Time with God may feel like a burden to you. I used to—and sometimes still do—drag my feet to spend time with God. But I soon found that nothing else sufficed. Other things might temporarily give satisfaction, but only God’s Word gives lifelong fulfillment and soul-deep strength.

When you’re exhausted, the Bible makes it clear that you should go to God’s Word. When you feel burnt out, go to a quiet place. Isolate yourself from any distractions and read His life-giving Word. Let Him speak to you.

He can handle your brokenness. He gave His Son—the perfect, holy One—and poured Him out so that you could pour yourself out before Him.

A few verses later, in verse 40 of Psalm 119, the psalm repeats its message, “Behold, I long for Your precepts; in Your righteousness give me life!”

That life the psalmist is referring to is found nowhere other than Scripture. Refresh yourself in God’s Word. Remind yourself why you’re here, why you continue to live when you feel you don’t have the strength to—to glorify God and make His name great.

Listen to God whisper to you in the midst of your mess, “I love you. I chose you. I want you.” Click To Tweet

Listen to God whisper to you in the midst of your mess, “I love you. I chose you. I want you.”

2. Spend Time with Godly Friends

Words can build up or tear down. They can fortify us, strengthen our faith, or they can make us doubtful, discouraged, and downtrodden.

Friends can do the same thing.

Spending time with those who tear us down is so unhealthy—for us and for those who interact with us. Godly friends play a vital role in keeping us afloat, in running with endurance the race we must run.

Think about the relationship between David and Jonathan, so close they were practically brothers. In 1 Samuel 23:16, ESV, the Word states, “And Jonathan, Saul’s son, rose and went to David at Horesh, and strengthened his hand in God.”

In this part in the account of David, the young king-to-be is fleeing for his life from Saul, who wants him dead.

Do you think he was dead tired? Exhausted? Burnt out? Weary? Absolutely!

God used Jonathan to come alongside David and strengthen him.

Surround yourself with friends that will build you up, like Jonathan. Friends that will remind you that though the race is hard, its reward is so much greater than the pain you face right now. Encourage them, too, because running this race is a difficult endeavor. And it’s one that’s made easier when done in community.

Friends are some of the greatest gifts God can give us. They can remind us to lift our chin and look toward the reward waiting for us in Heaven. Click To Tweet

Friends are some of the greatest gifts God can give us. They can remind us to lift our chin and look toward the reward waiting for us in Heaven.

If you have godly friends, lean on them when you’re dead tired, weary, and fainthearted. And if you don’t, lean on the “One who sticks closer than a brother” (Prov. 18:24), even as you pray for the godly friends you lack.

3. Remember to Rest

Rest is something you probably strive to get to but seems impossible to reach. And if you do reach it, you may feel guilty for resting when there’s so much to get done.

Your excuses for not resting may seem valid. And a lot of times, excuses for not taking naps every day like you wish you could are valid.

But there is not a valid excuse for forgetting the Sabbath. A day of rest is not optional. It’s a command.

Genesis 2:3, ESV, gives us the roots of where the Sabbath came from. The verse states, “So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all His work that He had done in creation.”

Think about it. If God—the Creator of the Universe, who spoke into existence stars and planets and galaxies—set aside time to rest, you can be assured that you should too. There’s no good excuse for never resting.

Work is good. With that, though, comes rest. Friend, if you’re weary and burdened, maybe it’s because you haven’t rested enough. I’m not saying there’s not valid reasons why you may feel like you can’t rest. An elderly grandparent to take care of, a doctor’s appointment you need to go to, the long list of things you must get done, the deadline at school that stares you in the face.

But you need to carve away time to rest. Nurture yourself with fellowship with other believers in the body of Christ.

You’ll find yourself rejuvenated after your day of rest. Because we were created to rest. Our frail human bodies cannot thrive without it.

Strength to Endure

If you find yourself so tired you can barely get out of bed, spend time in God’s word. Surround yourself with genuinely loving, caring friends. And take the Sabbath seriously, actually resting from your labors.

I was scanning Hebrews one day when a phrase popped out to me. Hebrews 11:34b, a phrase I later highlighted. The verse explains how notable men of the faith such as Gideon, David, and Samuel, “were made strong out of weakness.”

You may feel weak. But let me assure you, God can turn that weakness upside down into strength. Strength to push through, to fight, to love, to endure.

Strength to finish that race strong.

Hebrews 12:3, ESV, states, “Consider Him who endured from sinners such hostility against Himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.”

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About the author

Caitlyn Koser

Caitlyn Koser is a young homeschooled writer who lives in the Appalachian Mountains of Virginia. She loves Jesus, good books, and good friends. She loves reading and writing historical- and non-fiction. When not reading, writing, or making long cliche-replacement lists, she is usually outside in God's creation or quizzing her siblings on science trivia questions.


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rebelling against low expectations

The Rebelution is a teenage rebellion against low expectations—a worldwide campaign to reject apathy, embrace responsibility, and do hard things. Learn More →