Are we to serve to the point of exhaustion?

I know serving God is always good but should one serve God to the point of exhausting one’s physical strength? By which I mean lack of sleep and almost no rest. I know sometimes God calls us to go out of our comfort zones once in a while but I cannot understand doing this most of the time given that our bodies have limits created by God. I am in great need of enlightenment on the subject of service for God. Should one consider his/her limits?

Thank you.

Dear Catholic,

Here we need to make use of common sense—which alas is not so common! To serve and get necessary rest leaves us capable of service for another day. The Lord ordinarily expects us to take care of our bodies. Should circumstances make us choose between fidelity to the Lord and maintaining our health, the Lord must come first. This is the way of martyrs. But most of the time, we are not in such extreme situations. All things being equal, no one has the right to do damage to his or her own body.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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