The term “burnout” was coined in the 1970s. It was originally used to describe the consequences of severe stress and “high ideals” in service and helping professions. As global workers, we often have “high ideals” as we enter the field. Those high ideals can soon become disappointments, aggravations, and disillusionment when things don’t always turn out the way we had planned or imagined. We can strive in our own efforts to make things go exactly how we want them to, but in the end, this can cause tremendous burnout.
I love reading about history, especially United States history, and once, I came upon a story about Ulysses S. Grant that I have always remembered. As a military general in the Union Army, Grant led several victories during the Civil War. There was one victory in particular where Grant had cornered the opposing army. When the opposing general asked, “What are the conditions of surrender?” Grant responded with a resounding “unconditional surrender!” After that battle, Ulysses S. Grant’s first two initials (U.S.) came to be known as “unconditional surrender.”
I can’t help but think that much of our burnout would be lessened as we learn “unconditional surrender” to Jesus. Unconditional means that we give Jesus no conditions on our service. Unconditional means we release all our efforts and striving into His hands to do with as He will. Unconditional means we trust wholeheartedly that He is Sovereign and working all things together for His good through our surrender. The way to true rest is through surrender.
Jesus said in Matthew 6:28, “See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin.” All the flowers have to do is point their faces toward the sun and the sun does the work. It is in unconditional surrender that we find our rest.
What are ways you can give “unconditional surrender” to Jesus?