Reaching Maximum Capacity

Gratitude Day 382

Mon., Dec. 30, 2019

Proverbs 30:1: The words of Agur, Jakeh’s son, from Massa. The man declares: I’m tired, God; I’m tired, God, and I’m exhausted.

I had reached my maximum capacity.

While my brain wanted to think differently, my body knew better.

Last week, Hubby Rick and I came down with awful yucky colds/flu/bugs that hung around for several days. I started to feel yucky on Christmas Eve. But I wasn’t going to slow down for Christmas Eve worship (my favorite!), hosting family at our house, spending time with friends and helping with our grandchildren.

Nope. Planned events would go on.

When I got home Thursday night after a long day, I was ready for bed. For the next oh, 48+ hours, I spent most of them in bed.

On Saturday morning when I wasn’t up by mid-morning, Hubby Rick came checking on me. He has NEVER seen me spend this much time in bed; even post-surgery.

It just seemed like my body could not move. It just wanted to stay wrapped up in warm blankets and do nothing. Or almost nothing.

The whole situation is a little ironic. Just weeks earlier, I launched my first book, The Mary Experiment: When Doing and Being Collide. In the book, I share how I have tried to slow down my Martha tendencies and build more Mary-ness into my life.

Quite honestly, the last many weeks had been full-on Martha will barely any Mary-time. More than once, I felt a little hypocritical. I’ve let people into my life and tried to convince others and myself that I had changed. But had I really changed?

Not as much as I would like others to think.

And then, my body got a bug that didn’t go away. For days. Soon, I discovered that all I wanted, no, needed, was some Mary time.

I had reached my maximum capacity. And if the only way I would slow down was to physically become ill, then, this is what my body would do.

Ms. Martha-pants would be required to slow down. Let her body recharge, regroup and replenish. Whether I liked it or not, my body was saying, “I’m tired. I’m exhausted.”

Thankfully, I did not have much planned those days. As much as I was looking forward to a couple quiet days when I could do some planning and catching up, there was a different plan. And I needed to discover and follow Plan B.

Folks – we each have a maximum capacity that is unique to us. Your maximum capacity is different than mine. And when you reach your maximum capacity, how your body responds and forces you to slow down may be different than how my body responds. Often, I get sick. Congested. Run down. Tired. Exhausted. My chest is filled with junk. My body aches all over.  And there is only one prescription that really heals me: rest.

So, when I don’t respect or honor my maximum capacity, Plan B gets rolled out. I can will myself to keep going. Often, I do. But there comes a point when it’s best to stop. Surrender. See the larger picture. Rest.

These days between Christmas and New Year’s are often get days to SLOW DOWN. Rest. Enjoy. Savor. Get filled with the right things. Before you reach your maximum capacity and something happens that causes YOU to shut down, I encourage you to make sure YOU don’t reach your maximum capacity.

Instead, fill yourself with the best things that inspire you and give YOU joy.

For days to lower my maximum capacity into a more manageable range, I am grateful.

O God – too often, we think we know best … when really, we don’t. Help us respect and honor our maximum capacities. Encourage us to stop flirting with overload in our lives and slow down and savor the things that fill us. Amen.  

Blessings –

Dianne

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