Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
(Galatians 6:9, NIV)
I am going to be honest. I found the apostle Paul quite annoying recently. First, he tells the Galatians to “not become weary in doing good.” Then he tells the Thessalonians something similar: “And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good” (2 Thessalonians 3:13, NIV). When I was reading these passages, I wasn’t “tired.” I was exhausted! I didn’t want to do or be good. I didn’t want to be kind. I didn’t want to be loving nor patient, nor any of those other fruity things of the Spirit. I wanted to get paybacks to mean people. I wanted to be lazy and selfish, or better yet, just run away. No responsibility. No accountability. No sweet “sister” calling me on my behavior. Blah, blah, blah. I had slid into a pit, and fast.
I could see my evil twin, “Schmatty,” had taken over. I couldn’t even stand to be in my own head, but I had no idea how to get out. Well, I kind of had an idea but I didn’t really want to do it. In my head, I practiced clever sarcastic remarks and dreamed up the ultimate paybacks, but since the Holy Spirit dwells inside of me, He wasn’t nearly as pleased as I was with my creative thinking. I hate that. He never wants to accompany me in my ungodly antics. That is a really good thing, though. If I were left in complete charge of me, it would be a disaster. I’m glad He reigns me in.
I had enough of His Spirit in me to know “bad” but not enough to gush forth “good.” I had let myself get depleted. I hadn’t stopped to fuel up spiritually. I did my devotional but it was in check box form: done, check. I hadn’t rested in Him. I was empty of Him but quite full of myself. You can’t give what you don’t have. I needed more “good” and “kind” and “love.” I needed some sweet time with Him refreshing and refilling me with His spirit.
The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. … Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.
(Psalm 23, 1-3, 6, NIV)
That is how we never grow weary; we stay in close connection with Him and let Him restore us. The “goodness” will come following right behind us.