I have a long track record of becoming far too busy. Things-to-Do pile up, deadlines loom, and the potential to disappoint clients, friends, and family becomes dangerously close to reality. All this leads to a very unhealthy, and ultimately ungodly amount of stress. At some point, I realize that I’m way stressed out and add another thing to my to-do list: rest. However, I find that adding rest to my list of “things to do” doesn’t work. After all, I have more things on that list than I can do anyway, and resting doesn’t really relieve pressure from the rest of the list.
This summer I was challenged in my thinking about rest by some ideas from Jon Acuff in his book Start: Punch Fear in the Face. Here are some thoughts that have helped me that just might encourage you too:
- Rest is a gift. God gave us rest and it’s not something that we have to earn or deserve. Hebrews 4 talks about entering into Christ’s rest which is a finished work. I don’t add to it or take away from it. It’s done.
- Rest is part of humanity. We participate in God’s design for us and for the world by resting. It’s required. We quite literally cannot live without resting. By having to rest we remember our humanity… daily.
- Rest is worship. When we embrace rest we worship God by trusting Him for the things we can’t complete in our own strength.
I have thought about this a lot recently as I fall into bed exhausted every night. I don’t need to feel good about my day, myself or my performance to rest. Resting is an act of worship that embraces my humanity and rejoices in a very good gift from God.