Don't forget to rest....
I know that resting may be equated with laziness in your mind. You think you need to always be accomplishing something. If your agenda isn't filled with meetings, errands and to-do lists you don't feel that you have had a worthwhile day. You think that you need to put an X in a box, marking your task completed, to have fulfilled something of value. What if I told you that you needed to have a box ready to check with the word "rest" printed next to it? Would you think it was important enough to fit into your schedule? Would you scratch it out and treat it as a joke?
God put that box on your list. He has designed your life to include a time of rest. Don't take my word for it, look in HIS Word. After God created the earth, animals, day and night, light and dark, man and woman, he RESTED. He took the time to still his heart and actions and enjoy all he created. When he gave Moses the Ten Commandments he included the Sabbath, a day of rest, just to clarify the point: you can work all week long, but take time to rest. Obviously, God believes his children can benefit greatly by setting apart a day of the week where the focus of life is not on what must be done next but just quietly, calmly enjoying where we are in life and what surrounds us. This is a time to relax with God, free of distractions.
Our spirit needs this rest. During the week there are a million and one entities clamoring for our attention: work, the news, kids (if you have them), cleaning the house, tending to the weeds and lawn, paying bills, and maybe even exercising at the gym. There are countless directions that our lives take during the week. Come Saturday many people head out for the "fun" that they couldn't fit in during the week. To some people that is a dinner out with friends, a trip to the mall, an afternoon at the beach, or even just the morning spent in bed (or on the couch still in pajamas).
But Sunday is meant to be set apart. Every day is supposed to be spent connected to God through prayer and scripture, but Sunday is set apart as something different. This isn't a day where we go through the motions thinking more about God then the other days of the week. This is a day where we spend our time relaxing with God. Imagine that he has come over to spend some time just chatting on the porch swing with a nice cool glass of lemonade on a hot summer afternoon where the breeze is just right and not a cloud is in the sky. God wants to have that time with you, soaking in the beauty of the day he created. He wants you to simply sit back, relax and enjoy it with him.
When you begin to put into practice this resting principle you may feel like you're being lazy. It goes against your nature to do "nothing" - that is nothing that has a visible result - but that is precisely the kind of day God has designed for you. On this day he wants you to set aside the things that distract so that he can have your full attention. This is the best way to give your soul the TLC it needs. By allowing for this time of rest God can rejuvenate your spirit and renew your soul. With this fresh excitement and vigor you will be more prepared to greet the week to come with a Christ-like attitude and obedience, not to mention peace that only he can impart.
On your day of rest don't neglect the physical rest your body is crying for, too. Your body is in desperate need of this special time. All week long the demands of life take a toll on our physical being. Our muscles are worn out and our energy becomes depleted. The Sabbath is given as a time to recharge our batteries that are running on low. While sitting on the porch swing, fellowshipping with God, he will do the work of restoring your body. He doesn't want you worrying about getting in a workout, hitting the gym or meeting a certain scale's deadline. He wants your attention so he can tend to your physical and spiritual fatigue. Both are vitally important to being a useful and productive vessel for his kingdom during the rest of the week.
Today, on this special Sunday set apart just for you, I encourage you to breath a sigh of restful relief. Don't burden your mind with lists and errands. Don't stress about the week to come. Simply enjoy the presence of a Savior who came to save your soul and breath life into your being. He created you, cares for you and longs to give you a peace each and every day of the week. Today he wants to spend some one-on-one time with you. Will you give him that pleasure? His desire is to show you more of himself, reveal more of his love to you, and he wants to do it today - right now. He isn't demanding a sacrifice that comes in the form of a burnt offering, he is asking for your time and your rest. Will you give that to him today?