Ever seen a candle burn at both ends? Do they even make a candle holder for that? Maybe they do, but it must be an odd sight to see, and definitely is not what the candle maker had in mind when the candle was first created. Well, guess what, your candle cannot burn at both ends. Trust me, I have tried and at the end of the day, I’ve only found myself exhausted, drain, and no good for anyone, including myself.
The Creator did not design us to burn at both ends. What that means is, He did not create us to overdo it and to burn ourselves out. However, with everything so fast-paced and the increasing desire for us to complete so much more in a twenty-four-hour day, we easily find ourselves burning our candles at both ends.
I am guilty of this and I have found myself at times to be so busy that I not only neglect myself, but I neglect to spend time with God. Seriously, I get so exhausted that my body starts breaking down, my kids’ do not get the attention they need, and I tend to fall short of the many things I need to complete.
God did not make us this way. In fact, the Bible repeatedly tells us to REST. We’re just hard headed and apparently too busy to read about it. It is as if being so busy makes us look better, but to whom? Who are we trying to impress with a triple booked calendar and an exhausting social media timeline filled with posts about our busy lifestyles?
What we should post is what rest looks like. A few beach scenes with palm trees and our feet propped up in a hammock would look real nice. Or better yet, let’s find pictures of a candle burning at both ends to show just how strange it looks to light a candle that way. Candles burning at both ends reflect many of our lives, and the reason being is because we fail to rest.
Rest is so important to God that we are introduced to rest in the creation story where in Genesis 2:2, the scripture states, “And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.” (NKJV) God rested!! However, for us, we find more things to do on the seventh day, and instead of resting, we fill up our day with a bunch of shenanigans. We are so depleted by Monday, we end up calling out of work, or we get to work and are good for nothing because we are too tired.
A candle burning at both ends is an oddity, and so is an overly exhausted individual that cannot function because they did not take advantage of rest. Psalm 127:2 tells us, “It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to His loved ones.” (NIV) So what are you doing all of it for if God instructs you to rest? If your candle burns at both ends and the flames meet, eventually, that candle is going to burn out a lot quicker than it would if it was only burning properly on the one side. God loves you and He wants rest for your mind, body, and soul, so rest. Let go, say no, and don’t go. Sit still somewhere and rest.
Deborah Woolard is a single mother of three from Raleigh, NC and she currently resides in Charlotte, NC. She is an ordained & licensed minister and she serves as the Youth Director at R5 Church. Her love for writing, especially poetry is one of the many ways God allows her to use her gifts for His glory. Her poetry can be viewed at https://m.facebook.com/gracefullydsignedbydeborah/.