Finding rest. Sounds pretty simple, unless you are a workaholic or over achiever. Now I wouldn’t consider myself either of those, but I really do have a difficult time finding rest. My mind seems to keep going long after I decide to sit or rest. Any small item in the farthest reaches of my mind can find their way to the surface and disturb my peace and rest. The same goes for any noise. Maybe that comes from parenthood, always listening for the noises of our kids at night when we first brought them home from the hospital. This was an era before baby monitors or cameras.
Whatever the reason, it has been difficult to rest and relax. We are all a bit wound up right now as we still face challenges in restarting the world that has been on pause over the pandemic. Even when many of us were forced to stay home, we found multiple projects to do around our homes. Here in the US the home improvement stores never closed and were the busiest places, and the most crowded as shoppers found that doing home remodels and “Do it Yourself” projects kept them busy and gave them some sense of normalcy and purpose.
But now, as we start back to normalcy, we still have this sense of uneasiness and anxiety. Most of it is fueled by media, which we can be intentional to reduce. But still, sometimes it takes get away from the noise, the worry, the stress and anxiety and learning to rest. To Sabbath. To relax from our struggles to figure it all out, solve every problem, keep busy, keep working, keep striving. To simply stop and rest.
Here in the US we just celebrated Labor Day. It is a day designed to give the American worker a day off. A day to celebrate all the hard work accomplished. One day out of a year. To rest from labor and celebrate the hard work done. Think about that. One day a year. God knew we needed more than one day, so He created sabbath for us to rest from our labors. Just so we understood it, He himself rested, that is stop creating on the seventh day, the sabbath day.
For the first time in a while, I finally was able to experience a true sabbath day rest. My husband and I were able to travel to a nearby state for the Labor Day weekend. We stayed busy on a couple of the days visiting an aquarium and local sights, but we also made time just to rest by the pool at our hotel. I know that might sound a bit sacrilegious to sit by a pool on a Sunday and rest. To stop and listen to the birds, smell the flowers blooming nearby in the planters instead of being in church. But, it is what I desperately needed. To stop for a moment and cease working. Striving. Trying. Just enjoy what God has created for us to enjoy. To still my thoughts for a moment. To cease worrying and stressing over everything. To breathe. To close my eyes and be in the moment. To let go of taking care of everything and trust God to run the world. My world. Too often I think I am the one who must run the world or else it won’t get done. But, that is of course not true, but let me ask you have you ever felt that way? That it is all up to you? You have a difficult time taking time for yourself. You keep working in your mind long after you have finished your work and drove home? Or maybe you worry over your kids, even though they are fine. Or you worry over your health, or someone close to you’s health.
Whether you realize it or not, you are working, not resting. What you need is rest. It might not be easy for you to find time off. I understand. Sometimes you have to find a place to rest by finding a quiet spot near where you live. Somewhere to get away from the noise and stop and listen to quiet. A place of rest. -God Bless -Nancy