This is the message spoken loudly over me by many, by Jesus, by myself. Have you heard the calling to rest too?
Here’s a checklist to determine if you need rest.
- I forget things I normally don’t forget.
- I fall asleep to the TV.
- I can’t focus on the task at hand; my mind wanders.
- My thoughts multiply and I can’t quiet them.
- I have a hard time praying. Or my prayers are one word like, “Help!”
- I’ve gained weight.
- There are circles under my eyes.
- I cry easily.
- Christmas is more overwhelming than usual.
- It’s hard for me to get up in the morning.
If you identified with five or more of these statements, you need to rest.
Let’s do it together! Where to start? Sabbath. For the month of December I want you to take ONE day a week completely off. Unplug from technology. Make your meals ahead the day before (put stuff in a crockpot, plan to go out, etc.). Let others know you’re going to stop, and that they’re welcome to join you. Give yourself freedom to do things you absolutely LOVE, things that replenish you (no, not work). If you can, use that day to take a walk, write in a journal, read a book. You will not regret the power of taking a Sabbath.
Consider these sweet quotes about Sabbath.
“Sabbath is the golden clasp that binds together the volume of the week.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
“When your tongue is silent, you can rest in the silence of the forest. When your imagination is silent, the forest speaks to you. It tells you of its unreality and of the Reality of God. But when your mind is silent, then the forest suddenly becomes magnificently real and blazes transparently with the Reality of God.” Thomas Merton
“Like a path through the forest, Sabbath creates a marker for ourselves so, if we are lost, we can find our way back to our center.” Wayne Muller
“Sabbath is that uncluttered time and space in which we can distance ourselves from our own activities enough to see what God is doing.” Eugene Peterson
“O what a blessing is Sunday, interposed between the waves of worldly business like the divine path of the Israelites through the sea! There is nothing in which I advise you to be more strictly conscientious than in keeping the Sabbath day holy. I can truly declare that to me the Sabbath has been invaluable.” William Wilberforce
“He that would prepare for heaven, must honour the Sabbath upon earth.” David Wilson
“The Sabbath is the link between the paradise which has passed away and the paradise which is to come.” Andrew Wylie