We’ll serve better and longer if we recognise the reality of our limits and live within them. But God gave us this life for a reason—not to be hoarded and protected at all costs, but to be shared generously in the pattern of our Saviour. So tend the fire with wisdom and care. Take reasonable precautions against burning out.
Have you noticed that people aren’t quite the same after the pandemic? Apparently, humans beings can’t just pause most of their normal life activities for two years and then suddenly switch it all back on again without any difficulties. There are difficulties. People are generally more tired doing the same things, which makes them less willing to commit to the same number of things, which leaves some things undone, or at least struggling to get done. This seems to be especially true for voluntary activities like the local committees and clubs and churches that hold communities together and serve the needy and vulnerable. Serving others in these ways takes time and energy; resources that are already being demanded by commitments we can’t get out of, so often the easiest option is to cut the voluntary activities out. It makes sense. We only have so much to give. If we’re not careful, we’ll burn out. But I know a way to keep that from happening.
Here’s solution that will keep you from ever burning out in your service for others: don’t light the fire in the first place.