And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart (Gal 6:9 NKJV).

At first glance, it seems that Paul is simply telling us to “hang in there and don’t quit”.  But the more I dig into the words Paul uses, the more I realize that there’s a slightly different flavor to the text.  The phrase “grow weary” means to be wearied out or to be exhausted.  It doesn’t speak of quitting; it speaks of dropping from exhaustion.  The phrase “lose heart” doesn’t really have anything to do with your heart, but more the idea of letting go of something, of being so tired that you lose your grasp on what you’re holding.

I usually look at this verse as Paul being the coach on the sideline yelling at the runner to keep going and give it his best shot.  And certainly Paul’s goal is to encourage the believers to keep serving the Lord.  But rather than being an exhortation to keep going, Paul’s warning is really about not becoming so exhausted that you end up quitting.

Some of us take seriously our walk with the Lord.  We are looking forward to the day that He says to us, “Well done, good and faithful servant”.  We are constantly trying to tweak the engine of our life to get as much performance out of it as we can.  And that’s all very good.  But along the way we need to be careful to add the balance of rest.  An athlete who strives hard for the finish line trains hard to run, but also needs to have a life of balanced nutrition and rest.  Beloved, the goal is to make it to the finish line.  Be careful about becoming weary as you serve the Lord.