Everything I read about a living a balanced life stresses the importance of taking time to rest.
The thought of rest stresses me out!
I’m too busy to REST!
I have a family to take care of, kids to shuttle, pets to clean up after, a house to run, meals to plan, groceries to buy, food to prepare, laundry to wash-dry-fold-iron and put away. I have a full time job, meetings to attend, cars to maintain, books to read, a blog to write and a sidewalk to shovel.
Sound familiar? I’m sure it does. We women run from one thing to the next with nary a moment to spare. Who has time to rest?
The fact is that you need to rest as much as you need to breathe.
Truth be told, rest is work for me. I come from a long line of over achieving women who made multitasking an art form. Rest isn’t something that comes naturally to me. When I think about rest, something inside me seizes up. Somewhere in my conditioning, I learned to equate rest with laziness, weakness, and wasted time.
That lie needs to replaced with truth.
Sleep specialist Dr. Matthew Edlund believes it’s vital to build times of rest into your daily life. Rest is medically defined as a person’s state of repose. It simply means to cease from work or activity. Rest can make you more alert and effective, reduce stress levels and give you a better chance of a healthier and longer life. Rest refreshes and rejuvenates you!
Beyond what science says, what does God say about rest?
The Greek word for rest is anapausis meaning cessation, refreshment. Rest is God’s gift to us so we can stop endlessly striving. That’s what Jesus invites us into in Mark 6:31 when he says, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” Spiritual rest comes when we connect with God.
Rather than being regulated by many dos and don’ts like the Pharisees, we seek God – not out of obligation -but for refreshment and enjoyment. Jesus says in Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Christ’s rest is not a rest from work, but in work, not the rest of activity, but of the harmonious working of all the faculties and affections, of will, heart, imagination, conscience- because each has found in God the ideal sphere of its satisfaction and development. (Vines concise dictionary).
What does restorative rest look like?
- Seeking God’s face in creation.
- Reading his word.
- Time in prayer.
- Listening to worship music.
- Being in his presence.
What’s your best rest plan? As a rest resister, I need all the suggestions I can get! I’d love to hear your idea.
Scripture: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. (Matthew 11:28-29 NIV)
Prayer: God, you know the pace I keep to serve you and serve others. Remind me that you are able to get everything done that needs to be done, and as I trust and follow you, teach me how to work and rest. Restore me so that I can be who you made me to be.