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Struggle With Shutting Other People Out?

God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God” (Matthew 5:9).

Stress and burnout can cause us to project our pain and exhaustion on others — usually those closest to us. Some people respond to burnout by lashing out in anger and storming around in a rage as their lives are falling apart.

Exhaustion can cause us to shut down and stop communicating with our spouse or our friends. And by “communicating,” I mean both talking and listening. We no longer feel connected to those around us, and we begin not to care about nurturing those relationships that God has placed in our lives.

After not communicating for a while, resentment can develop. Our spouses or friends may not feel comfortable opening up to us anymore, and bitterness can be formed and directed toward us, toward the church, and even toward God.

Reflect:

In Matthew 5:9, Jesus directs us to be “peacemakers.” It will take effort and intentionality on our part to bring balance back into our relationships. We are to make peace and strive for unity.

Have you cut off communication with people because you’re feeling burned out? Write down their names and a trait you admire about each one of them. Then write down a date you will contact them, making amends if necessary.

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ajackson@churchleaders.com'
Anne Marie Miller (formerly Jackson) is a writer, speaker, and social change activist who lives in Orange County, California. She also holds the position of Storyteller at Visioneering Studios Architecture.