This is going to be one of those rare, short posts…I don’t have a lot to say, but I do just want to share what I feel God has put on my own heart this morning to help me. And to be real, I am still struggling with this and would love some prayer in this area if you have time today.
With the end of the school year comes lots of stress, behaviors, and just antsy-ness to have the year be done. I’m starting to slowly, but surely feel that antsy-ness (I’m not sure if that’s a word, but it is now). As we all are well-aware, it has been a LONG year and I think that not only the teachers, but the students who are now for the first time in a year fully back to school 8 hours a day and 5 days a week are really starting to just feel exhausted.
On top of that, Ed & I’s wedding is so close! Only 39 days! While that’s SO exciting, it also brings stress because it’s such a big day that we both want to go well for ourselves and for our family. It’s going to be such a special day. I have to keep reminding myself that the most important thing is that Ed and I glorify and honor God by making our commitment to each other before Him and before our families. If anything else goes wrong, it doesn’t matter because THAT is the point.
So, with all these things “behind-the-scenes”, so to speak, there is a lot going on…per usual. Yesterday, I was struggling so hard to get out of bed and to get myself not even excited (because that felt pretty much impossible), but just wanting and ready to go into school to teach. I’m sharing this very vulnerably and a little ashamedly, but I think that there is value in being honest, especially as a teacher. We give so much of ourselves to our students that our cup often so quickly becomes emptied or low when we don’t take time for ourselves or in my experience, time to be with the Lord. This applies not only to teachers, but to all walks and careers in life, but this is just my experience I wanted to share.
Back to yesterday…I really struggled and debated if I should go into school or not that day and ultimately decided that I needed to take a day to take inventory of my heart, my head, and just my whole-being because I was not in a good space. So I called in. I found out later that day that 8 other teachers had also called off, which is just unheard of, so I knew that I wasn’t alone. Other people are feeling this same internal struggle.
Throughout the day I struggled to relax, I kept finding my shoulders hunched up and had to keep reminding myself to be calm and just let go of the stress I was carrying. By the end of the day, I realized that since I went on a trip this weekend, I didn’t get to spend as much time as I would have liked to reading my Bible, praying, and singing worship songs. I realized that I hadn’t been “filling my cup” so to speak, or in all honestly, letting God fill my cup. So I made time and space to sing worship songs and start to say little prayers to God to begin to re-align my heart.
I wish I could say that I’m sitting here hyped up and ready to go back today, but I am not. What I can tell you is that my cup is a little more full today, and I am aware. I am aware that my cup is low and I am aware of what I need to be sure to do to continue to have my cup be filled by God so that I can pour out onto others.
Anyways, my goal in writing this is that it encourages you in one of these ways…or maybe in a way I’m not even aware of!
- If you feel tired and worn out, you are not alone.
- If your cup is empty, it’s okay to take a break or a day to search yourself and to see how you can re-focus or re-align your heart to God and to get closer to Him so He can fill your cup. We cannot fill our cups on our own, we need His help. A valuable lesson I will never forget from my first year of teaching is that “You cannot pour from an empty cup.” Trust me, I tried. I can’t tell you how many times I got physically sick my first year of teaching from trying to keep pouring out when I was not okay.
- Spend time in prayer and/or reading the Bible. Don’t discount how valuable this is to filling your cup. Just from a few days of not reading my Bible, I can tell a huge difference in my heart and my mindset. Use the Bible App if you want to find a new devotional or don’t know where to start in your Bible. Write down people’s names on prayer cards and walk around inside or outside to pray for them. Listen to worship songs on the way to work or wherever you are going. I promise these things make a HUGE difference!
- Tell someone that you are struggling. Remember that it’s okay and normal to not be okay at all times. We are allowed and going to have bad days, but don’t go through those days alone. Ask for prayer, encouragement, or just a listening ear. Be real and honest with people. It’s freeing and will help lighten your load. Let people walk with you.
And really, that’s all I wanted to share. I have no way to wrap this up with a neat little bow, and quite honestly, I don’t have the mental energy to sit here and try to do so haha! I’m still in this and going through this and would love to partner in prayer with you if you feel the same way. Thank you for taking the time to read my post today! I really do hope it helps you in some way.