Have you ever felt like your zip has been stripped away? You’re out of balance. Physically, mentally, emotionally & maybe even spiritually tired? When you know moving your body will help your body recover, circulating oxygen & nutrients, but also know you can’t over do it?
Read on to learn about how this recently happened to me, how I used the Vine & Branches analogy to overcome it & what you can do to move past it if it happens to you. Emerging on the other side stronger in the Lord.
Zapped of Energy
The past several weeks I’ve taken it easy with body movement. Longer, slower strolls through the woods and walking walking pastures.
Well… the end of April I crunched my car. I hit the accelerator instead of the brakes as I pulled into a parking spot. Thank goodness the concrete bollard in front of the store prevented my car from hitting and possibly entering the store.
There were no injuries other than the adrenaline rush that flooded my body. (OK, my car & the bollard too, and a little bit-my pride). But my thoughts were largely of gratitude. How thankful I was God sent my guardian angel to protect me and so many other little blessings that flowed out of that 1 second in time.
The downside…. Recovering from the adrenaline rush.
I felt like God just kind of cupped me in both his hands, covering me up. Instead of that open palm image one usually has of where God holds us, I felt like he placed his other hand over me, forcing me to rest.
I was tired, lacked energy & creativity and was just not my usual go-get-em self.
This isn’t the first time this has happened & I knew I needed to find a balance. I’d feel worse if I didn’t move my body, but I couldn’t overdo it – or it would take me forever to recover.
Finding Balance by Honoring My Body
Most chores on the farm require more physical exertion, but walking pastures is one of those things I can do at my own pace.
What is walking pastures you ask?
It’s literally walking through the pastures & pulling or chopping down/digging up poisonous or other weeds the animals won’t eat or aren’t good for them. Those mama ewes & baby lambs need safe food to eat.
Sometimes, I also pick up large sticks & branches that fall from the trees, tossing them on a pile to burn at a later time. I check the fences to make sure they’re still able to do their job & keep the animals in. (We get to replace & repair some fence later this summer-like the one you see in the background.)
It usually takes about 60 – 90 minutes depending on how much I want to or need to do. I can walk as fast or as slow as I want. And the best part…most of the pastures have tree cover, my favorite part of God’s Creation (aka nature) where I feel sheltered, loved & nurtured by God.
Remaining in Jesus as He Remains in Me
Walking pastures is always an opportunity for me to just rest in the Lord. Strengthen my connection to him, renew my trust & faith in him. To remember God is the vine grower, Jesus is the vine, the Holy Spirit moves the water, nutrients & energy through the vine, aware of my needs as a branch.
I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I him him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing.
It gives me time & space to meditate on this verse if I remain in Jesus, he remains in me, he will provide whatever I need & even though I don’t feel it in that very moment. But if I continue to remain in Jesus, I will bear much fruit.
Remaining in God I can do any & everything he wants me to. Cut off from him, I can do nothing.
Needless to say, I’m feeling much better this week. The creative energy is starting to flow again. Hence this long blog post. 🙂
Maybe you’ve never felt the aftermath of an adrenaline rush (or recognized it), but have you ever felt out of balance?
Lacked motivation, energy, inspiration, creativity or get-up & go. Maybe not a full on depression, but more of a tired energy for a few days, weeks or even months?
Using Prayer to Listen to Your Body
While it’s important to move your body to get that energy moving again when you feel stuck in the muck, it’s just as important to listen to your body. To know what’s best for it.
Sometimes when you’re that stressed, the added stress of a vigorous workout does more harm than good.
It’s a good opportunity to tune into that Temple of the Holy Spirit God blessed you with to see what it needs.
Does it need more stretching? What about more vigorous activity? More strengthening? Or do you just need something different? A change of scenery or routine? Working different muscles in different ways?
Maybe you have an injury or are prone to injury in certain areas. (Plantar fasciitis or tennis elbow, anyone?) Do you currently move your body in ways that continually aggravate it or have you found other enjoyable ways to move your body?
If you struggle to move your body, ask God what he wants you to do. Then open yourself up to his answer and take the steps necessary to follow through with that inspiration.
Don’t discount the 1st thing that lights you up when you ask the Lord this question & ponder it. It could be something as simple as walking around the block or washing a window or two. Or it could be heading to the gym, the trail or calling a friend to go with you.
Take a moment to imagine yourself doing whatever that inspiration is. How do feel doing it? After you do it? How do you feel just thinking about doing it?
Hang on to those positive feelings. They’ll help bring you back into balance.
Let those feelings spur you into action by making a plan right then & there to do it. Find that video, put your walking shoes in your car so you can walk after work (before you get home), write ‘resistance bands’ on your shopping list so they get in your house.
Then ask God for the courage to follow through, keep thinking about him as you do it & thank him when you finish. (Journaling is a great way to solidify these feelings & help you feel balanced!!!)
Remaining in Jesus as he remains in you, allowing you to produce much fruit as you create the happy, active, vibrant life you really want & God really wants for you.
Has there been a time in your life when you had to switch up your workout routine? Downshift it due to an injury or other reason? Is your body calling you to switch things up now? How did you listen to your body? What did God inspire you to do? What actually worked for you?
Share with us in the comments below! Your experience could be the exact inspiration someone else has been searching for. Helping us all to enjoy the journey!