Our servant hearts can be such blessings, but at times I know I’ve felt I’ve taken on too much for others.
Yes, God calls us to bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2), to help and to serve. But did He really mean always? We have to use our discernment to know when our resources are in abundance and when they’re not. (2 Corinthians 8:13-14)
Just as we can carry burdens for others, sometimes we are the ones in need of being carried. How do you know when it’s time to carry and when it’s time to be carried?
Signs someone is ready to carry:
- They get consistent sleep that rejuvenates and refreshes them
- They feel energetic throughout the day
- They have room in their schedule
- They take care of themselves
- They are eager to listen to others
- They can easily identify and regularly interact with support people
- They engage in positive coping mechanisms (journaling, exercise, prayer and devotion, talking to support people, hobbies, etc.)
Signs someone needs carrying:
- Their sleep is of low quality and/or quantity
- They rely on caffeine to get through the day
- They have uncontrollable emotions
- They have feelings of panic, anxiety or being overwhelmed
- They have difficulty concentrating
- They regularly use of negative coping mechanisms (food, alcohol, tobacco, etc.)
- They have frequent colds or illnesses or worsening of health conditions
While it’s true Christ asks us to carry other’s burdens, we also have to remain aware of our ability to do so. Encourage those around you to honestly assess their abundance before taking on more. They could be in a season where they need carrying, not where they need to be carrying more.