Before I dive into the blog I just wanted to take a moment to say: hello lovely readers! I am not the wonderful author of this blog, but his wife Danielle. I have the pleasure of sharing some of what has been heavy on my heart during the last few months of this world health crisis.
Although it’s a bit redundant at this point- the pandemic has had a major impact on my life and the world around me. At the point of me writing this there have been 19.2 million confirmed cases and approximately 716,000 deaths. It will only increase in the days leading up to this being posted. No matter your “theories” or opinions on the effectiveness on masks or if the moon landing didn’t happen, this doesn’t take away from the tragedy of the brothers and sisters around us. So many of those who will have complications due to this virus for the rest of their lives. The lasting economic impact for families and countries. Based on history and trends we have set, I’m not all that excited for what the near future holds.
I have spent so many days (even weeks) just in plain frustration with how things have been handled by those who are supposed to have our best interest in mind, and anger at the reaction of people I previously respected. This anger and frustration obviously did not help me, my mental state, or anyone fighting with this terrible virus. It pushed me further from my relationship with God, and while I realized what was happening, I didn’t stop those feelings from overcoming me. In this time Joshua and I did start going on daily walks because the monotony of our apartment and it helped. We were able to talk to each other and talking with my husband helped a lot, but we were an echo chamber and I knew that he wasn’t who I really needed to be talking to.
It wasn’t until our zoom small group on June 8th that who I needed to talk to hit me like a truck. I couldn’t tell you what we were talking about that night that really triggered it, but something did. The next morning Joshua and I woke up and for the first time (at least for me) I really sat with the Lord. I journaled my prayers and frustrations. I pleaded for answers and understanding. Up to this point I was pouring from an empty cup and felt so drained and defeated. Over the next days and weeks, every morning we sat with Jesus.
Never before have I felt like I truly understood what the word “weary” means. I’ve had some obstacles in life, but none have left me so exhausted than this year. I realized how privileged I truly am, but that didn’t take away from the weight of that exhaustion. In these mornings we have re-cultivated with Jesus I have never appreciated Matthew 11:28 more than I do now: “Come to me all who are weary, and I will give you rest.”
I know this verse is constantly used in times of suffering and loss, but in my own weariness going to Jesus has the only thing that gives me rest. It hasn’t always been in the way I expected because the problems didn’t go away. I’m still on furlough and the world still feels like it’s on fire. There are relationships in my life that I don’t know if they will ever be mended and my mental health is an uphill battle. I do know, however, that I don’t need to take the weight of all of this on my own shoulders.
Weariness can look different for everyone, and most of the time the issue is way out of your control. The beauty in all of this is that we can choose to lay these issues down. We can seek guidance on the best path forward, but not be overwhelmed by what we cannot control. We can seek rest and comfort in a God who loves us unconditionally, and will always be there to allow us to take his strength upon us. We are never alone in trying to plow through life, but if we don’t allow Jesus to come alongside we will never find the rest we need.
About the Author: Danielle Thomas is just a twenty-something navigating this crazy world with a love of Jesus and a heart for justice. Check out my Instagram to see what life is teaching me and the constant battle of what castle I love best: Hogwarts or Cinderella’s @annadanielle__