I guess it all started Thursday morning when I was called by my aunt who wanted to know my plans for Saturday (yesterday). Apparently, one of the guys at my church needed help moving, and my aunt --being the big-hearted facilitator that she is--wanted to know if I could lend a helping hand. "Of course!" I replied without hesitation, for I could never withhold help from my favorite aunt ( or perhaps more accurately, it didn't quite register that I would actually have to sacrifice a sacred Saturday morning of sleep in order to help).
But just as scheduled, Saturday morning came and my sleep was ruined. Irritated, I rolled out of bed and got ready to "do work" -- a term oozing with male bravado that we men apply to any and every thing that may (or may not) resemble actual work. However, in this case, the work that had to be done was legitimate.
Being the "young buck" of the group - for all the other men were 20, 30, and 40 years my senior-- I had to prove my manliness. I lifted, pushed and pulled my way into their radars; I was determined to be recognized for my manhood, even if it killed me. For a while, everything was going well. Full of vitality, I quickly moved boxes and even grappled with the more beastly items, such as furniture, successfully.
Without my car, I decided to walk home, just a couple of blocks away. As I walked, laughter erupted behind me--apparently they were amused by my youthful incompetence. Vaguely amused myself, I chuckled home on my walk of shame.
Though this is a funny story, there is a lesson to be learned. As Christians actively involved in ministry, we must pace ourselves. More accurately, we must be paced by the Holy Spirit. We cannot afford to burn out. Always remember that, though you may have a good start in ministry, "you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised" (Hebrews 10:36).
Serve God. Serve People.