Rest from the Heat
For the last few days I have had the privilege of spending some time in beautiful San Diego, California. Now for those of you who have been to San Diego, you know that the weather there is pretty much perfect all year long. It remains a consistent 65 to 75 degrees; a glorious reprieve from the Texas heat. Just as it is good to take a little break from the hot summer weather in Dallas, it is also good to take a little intentional break from the heat of our busy and overloaded lives.
In the Old Testament we read that God designed a plan for the Israelites to rejuvenate themselves each week, and it is a plan which can still strengthen us today. God told his people, "Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. (Exodus.” 20:8-10). God wanted his people to be set apart from the rest of the nations by having a Sabbath day – a day of rest from their normal activities. It was for their own good so they wouldn’t become “burned out” or live in a constant state of stress.
Do you take time to refresh and rejuvenate from the hustle bustle of your week?
Our loving and caring Father knows we need a time of regular refreshment. But we must be deliberate about setting aside a time of Sabbath. The word “Sabbath” in the original Hebrew literally means “to rest.” Ask yourself, what is work to you and what is rest to you? Do you have a time when you stop and rest each week? Personally, I began setting aside Sunday afternoon as a time of rest and reflection, praying for God’s help and guidance for the coming week. I decided to step away from answering emails, returning phone calls and running a lot of errands on Sunday – as those represent work to me. In it’s place I read, rest and pray which brings refreshment to my spirit and helps me start off my week feeling renewed.
Stop and think, what can you do differently to create a time of rest at least once a week. It may be small changes, yet deliberate ones which open up the possibility to experience more calm in your weekly routine. As moms, encourage your children to do the same. In our overly active and involved culture, it is hard to carve out a time for solitude and rejuvenation, but I believe this is why we have so many stressed out families and kids.
Charles H. Spurgeon spoke of the Sabbath not as a form of legalism, but as a blessing. He said the Lord’s day for the Christian, “is to him a joy, a day of rest, of peace and of thanksgiving. And if the Christian can earnestly drive away all distractions, so that you can really rest today, it will be good for your bodies, good for your souls, good mentally, good spiritually, good temporally, and good eternally.”