Rest Isn't a Bad Word
In Genesis we find the creation account, where God made all that was made... and God, the One who breathes planets, rested on the seventh day.
I think it is safe to say, that God didn't rest because He was tired, but rather, because He was illustrating a picture that He wanted us to live.
In some seasons I have done better than others, but I have tried hard to live consistently with a Sabbath in my week. A day that in large part, doesn't have any pressing matters for me. Right now, that day is Friday. I still have basic things I have to attend to, sometimes I need to run to the store, there are meetings or conferences that just can't be avoided, and sometimes I have to pick up or drop off kids, but outside these types of things, it is a day that in large part, is focused on finding rest. It also happens to be the day that Treasa and I have a standing breakfast date together, and this is a wonderful addition to my day of rest. I look forward to Fridays every week, and at the end of Friday, I always feel more optimistic and excited about the week in front of me.
For the sake of transparency, I want to give some context. I always have things to do when Thursday night comes to an end. There are always people who would like to meet with me on Fridays. There is always a temptation to work on Fridays. My Sabbath isn't a part of my life, because I don't have much going on. I am a father of six amazing kids, I am a church planter, I am a husband, and I am a friend. I always have more to do, than I can do. I believe this makes the need for a Sabbath even more important.
The primary reason I share this, is because this is really hard for me. I hate to do nothing. I often wrestle with feelings of guilt when I'm not working, and I often put off vacations with my family because I stay too focused on church.
This message is particularly important, because my family is also going on vacation next week.
I'm not sure if you're like me, and wrestle with rest, but if you are, I want to encourage you today.
Hebrews 4:9-11 "So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God's rest has also rested from his works as God did from his. Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience."
It doesn't matter what gifts you have, where you serve, or what you bring to the table... your part matters, it matters far more than you know.
In order for you to walk out your path with strength, and with endurance, you need to rest.
If you don't, you're making yourself susceptible to falling, to burn out, to feeling thin and eventually... becoming ineffective. Not just ineffective for work in the church, but ineffective in your friendships, your family, your community.
Let's choose to rest friends. Take vacations, take breaks, find opportunities to nap. Take a day each week where you do as little as possible, so you can reflect on what good things God has done for you. Let your heart, your mind, and your spirit become rejuvenated.
It's worth it, it will be good for you, and good for everyone around you.