photomeI had a pastor in my office today sharing with me how tired she is and not quite sure she can keep going. She is a mom, a wife, a leader in our ministry to first generation Christians and going to seminary. She has a right to be tired.

But then I had to confess something to her right then and there. I wasn’t listening.  Oh I heard the words, I nodded my head in fact I understood. Thing is I am tired too. We talked about what to do and what not to do. How to take care of ourselves as shepherds. Rest, eat right, make sure we are meditating and worshiping, sharing with our peers. But you see that doesn’t stop the needs that keep coming.

There are sermons to preach, lessons to prepare, food to distribute, activities to attend, Christmas eve services to conduct, more messages to prepare, there is even budgets to write, people to lift up, hands to hold, smiles to fix and then more sermons to write you see it just all piles up. For shepherds this is often our Advent.  Get it? Just all keeps piling up and that always results in the statement she made, “I just don’t think I can keep going.”

So we paused…we prayed, we smiled and moved ahead. Edward Tyler in Prayer in Celebration of the Turning Year wrote, “As the mother understands the wordless child, the wise teacher hears the stammering boy, the sage hears the awe-silenced pilgrim, hear us, our Father, as we hold up to thee our longings and our need. In Christ’s name. Amen.

Today as you travel your own path keep those who meditate, pray and watch over you while traveling that path in your prayers.