By: Dennis Bates
Two weeks ago I asked The Boss aka Staci for some time off. As I wrote then about it then, I was burnt out to put it mildly. I have learned the hard way that when I don’t pay attention to my body’s warning signs, my body does whatever it has to do to get the attention it needs. Usually that means I get sick and am forced to take time off to recover.
As I get older, I get those warning signs more frequently, and I take them very seriously. One of the benefits of age is that you finally learn to do what you should have been doing all those years when you were younger. Well, most of the time, anyway. Similarly, one of the down sides of youth is that young people feel invincible like nothing can ever touch them. To them, rest is for the weak and besides, there is so much that they just have to do. They don’t have time to slow down and listen to their own body’s warning signs.
That is one of the biggest mistakes a young person can make. (For our purposes let’s define young as anyone under 50. Yikes, better make that under 60.) A person can only take so much, regardless of their intelligence level or their physical fitness level. When a person continually tries to do too much, eventually they break. It happens to everyone.
The Boss stepped in for me while I was resting up, in spite of the fact that she had a full plate of activities herself. Then she added more things to her list of things to do. She has a knack for doing that and even though some of the long list of her older, but wiser cyber friends tried to warn her, she pressed on. And last weekend, her body got her attention. She broke.
Don’t worry. I know The Boss well enough to know that she will mend. She is one of those young people I referred to, so it’s easier for her to men. I also know that she is a devoted mother and wife, so there are some things that she insists on doing. I won’t go into the details of what happened last week, as I know them because I could never tell the story as well as Staci does. I won’t even try. If she wants to tell everyone about her experience, she will.
But today it’s payback time. I am covering for her just as she covered for me. It struck me that it’s one of the things we as Christians can do for each other. We can and should pick up the slack for each other when one of our sisters or brothers needs to rest so they don’t break. Through our collective prayers for each other and our willingness to encourage each other, we show God’s love, and we are the better for it just as much as the person we pray for is. We all heal as we help each other heal. We all have our strength renewed as we step into the gaps and help each other out.
Relax, my friend. Your Christian friends have your back, and I am proud to be one of them. I still think you are high maintenance, but aren’t we all sometimes? That’s why we are here for each other.