Kinds of Tired

For several years I've talked about the "Christian "F" Word." You know, when people ask you how you're doing it's always the response: "Fine."

Even when you're not fine, you say "fine," which really means "I heard your question and social constructs obligate me to give a response."

So, I try really hard not to say "fine," when people ask me how I'm doing. I still want to be polite, I just want to be unique.

Recently when people ask me how I'm doing I tell them "tired." I noticed myself doing it yesterday, and spent some time thinking about it while I drank my Chick-Fil-A peach milkshake last night (Lord Jesus, please let there be Chick-Fil-A peach milkshakes in heaven. Amen).

It occurs to me that there are two types of "tired."

The first kind of tired is when you're running in the area of your sweet-spot, using your giftedness to do what God put you on the earth to do. You're stretched, pushed and exhausted, but in a really good way. You're like the Super Bowl MVP who has just enough gas in your tank to finish strong and party hard, but you're running on sheer adrenaline. That's a good kind of tired. Most Sundays after I preach I come home really, really tired, but in a really, really good way.

The other kind of tired happens when you're operating in your own strength, with your own abilities, outside your area of giftedness. You're doing a lot of things that other people could do as well or better if your pride didn't get in the way of you empowering them to do it. This kind of tired makes everything feel forced, like the marathon runner who limps like a zombie across the finish line. Their bodies weren't created for that kind of beating and it takes a long time to recover. When you operate too long in areas outside what God has created you to do, it takes a toll. That's a bad kind of tired. It's okay to be there for a season, but those kinds of activities are not sustainable for long.

How am I? Honestly these days, I find myself vacillating between the two tireds. It's only for a season, but that's where I'm at. You didn't really want that information when you asked though. For fear of overwhelming you with a distinction that only seems important to me, I'll just tell you I'm "tired," and get back to the milkshake. It's really good.