After praying for her son, she felt His prompting to call him, which she rarely did while
he was working. She validated herself with the reminder of not hearing from him after
trying two nights in a row with no answer.
He picked up on the second ring. “Hi, Mom. How ya doing?”
She was so relieved to hear his voice, she ignored his question and instead asked her
own: “How are YOU?” Before he could answer, she explained her tone: “I’ve called you
a couple of times; I was beginning to get worried. Once a mom always a mom.”
He laughed…and then he didn’t.
“You sound tired.”
“I am.” He went on to explain his work situation, that people were quitting and/or getting
fired, increasing his workload, how bad management was, and he ended with “there’s
just no end in sight.”
She knew her son well enough to know he valued his sleep and little sleep meant little
fuse. She also remembered how depressed he had been after a long bought of Covid
that had cost him his career, and how excited he’d been to get this new job.
She validated his frustration, and he continued with more frustrations. She practiced
listening and asking a question or two in between each one. “On your one day off, are
you doing anything to replenish your soul, making time to laugh, have fun?
His answers were “no” with explanations of just trying to stay caught up on sleep while
juggling fatherhood with his four kids. His responses shed some light on what was really
going on. His focus was on how tired he was/is, and not a solution.
He was discouraged and headed for burnout.
“Sometimes we can be so focused on the problem we miss the solution.”
“What do you mean?” he asked.
“Well, our brain only knows what we tell it. You keep reminding yourself how tired you
are that you are behaving tired.”
“Do you believe that God put you in this job?”
“Oh, for sure.”
“Well, where He guides, He provides.” You just have to ask Him for the strength. If you
keep telling yourself how tired you are, you’re going to remain tired.”
“Makes sense.” He paused and then burst out with: “I’m just fine!” in a joking tone.
“No, you don’t have to lie!” She went on to remind him of a verse he used to always
say when endeavoring a trick on his skateboard, “I can do ALL things thru Christ…”
He finished the verse: “…who strengthens me.”
“Maybe you could try switching ‘I’m tired’ for that promise.”
Suddenly she could feel his demeanor change over the phone and in his words: “Well, I
can’t argue with that.”
She heard him smile.
They talked for a few more minutes before hanging up. She sat there grateful for having
not ignored the prompting to call him at work, realizing that he not only needed
encouragement, but she had needed to know he was okay.
Friend, can I encourage you in this area of understanding that the brain only knows
what we tell it; and what we tell it will come out in our attitude and actions. Pray this
prayer with me:
Father, thank you for your Spirit that lives within each one of us who have accepted you
as Lord and Savior. Help me to focus on your promises which lead to solutions instead
of my problems. Thank you for loving me too much to leave me focusing on my
problems instead of your promises.