Called to rest not crash

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When we rest, we’re able to take a snapshot of life as it is and see more clearly the forest from the trees.

After a week long holiday in the UK and then a week of settling back into the everyday rhythms of life, I’ve been thinking a lot about rest. For a long time I found myself crashing at the end of the day scrolling through my phone with the TV on in the background. I used to think this was a form of rest.

Traveling is an important and fun aspect of life. It’s healthy to remove oneself from work and everyday routines to rest and gain a fresh perspective. It’s equally important to include times of rest in the midst of our own schedules at home.

As our good shepherd, God gives us power and ability to lie down in green pastures, pause, be still, and rest. He also gives us everything we need in life to sustain us; he prepares a table of natural and spiritual sustenance and we don’t have to strive to survive. In fact, we get to enjoy God’s provision in the midst of and in spite of all the stresses and, sometimes, terrible situations happening around us.

The temptation in life is to wait to rest until a vacation or to replace rest with crashing on the couch in front of the TV. Neither of these are wrong; they just aren’t sustainable forms of rest in our lives. And I’m as guilty as anyone for doing both of these in place of rest!

Josh and I had numerous discussions about what our individual formula for rest is. We are all energized and refreshed by different activities. Figuring out what brings us rest and renews our souls takes some self reflection. What actions inspire you and provide you with time to reflect and fill you up with energy and fresh perspective? I’m talking about practical habits that restore our mind, will, and emotions.

My formula for rest is: reading novels + nature + time to organize

Josh’s formula for rest is: nature + art museums + creating for fun

Depending on personality, individual interests, and season in life, everyone has a different formula for rest. Maybe it’s gardening, painting, reading, walking, listening to uplifting music, cooking, the list could go on and on. The actions that produce peace and perspective are key to your formula for rest. Balance is so important. It’s easy to become extreme in one area, but we’re not called to be so reclusive we become isolated from others nor are we called to become so social we become isolated from ourselves.

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While in Bristol, England, we climbed to the top of a tower and saw a 360 degree view of the city. It was amazing. When we rest and allow our souls to be restored, we see our lives from a new and better perspective. Rather than continually being caught up in the hustle and bustle of work and routines, we see the bigger picture and can give better meaning to the everyday busyness and mundane.

Everything we do in life should come from a place of rest. It should and must be an intentional part of our lives. It’s so important to figure out a formula for rest and replace some of that time crashing on the couch with intentional times of rest.

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He provides a resting place for me in His luxury-love. (Psalm 23:2)

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