Saturday, September 17, 2011

If You Are Too Tired To Care You Need Some Rest

We all get tired for various reasons. Sometimes we have to press on because we don't have a choice but this shouldn't be all the time. Rest is a very important part of our day and our week. Most people do not realize that at the very beginning of time our Creator also created rest. Scripture tells us that on the seventh day God looked at all he had done, was pleased and rested from his work. Do you really think that the Creator of all things needed rest? No, he didn't but he established the need for rest and would make this day of rest a holy day, intended for worship, the strengthening of our relationship with him.

Some would say that God's only intention was to create a day of worship but whatever God establishes spiritually also has purpose physically. Man would need a day to recover his strength after six days of hard work. This seventh day was not just for worship but for regathering our strength, however some of us think we know better than God and we fail to establish a Sabbath day in our week. We think we are being industrious but all we are doing is opening ourselves up for health problems, emotional emptiness, a spiritual void, and a loss of quality to our lives.

Sometimes we push ourselves beyond anything normal, to the point of total exhaustion. We can no longer handle the simplest problem or emotion that comes at us in a normal day. We lash out at those who care for us the most. Little stresses that would not even register on our consciousness suddenly become the catalyst to breakdowns, emotionally, physically and spiritually. I am telling you straight here, if you operate on all four cylinders 7 days a week it is not a matter if you crash but when.

If you are too tired to love and to properly respond to the ones who love you it is time to come aside from everything and spend some quiet time with the Lord. It doesn't matter if you have a hundred things that are not done, if you do not take a break they may never be completed. Go for a casual walk with someone you love, sit under a tree and read a good book, watch a movie with a friend, lay down in your backyard and watch the stars come out, take a long hot bath, quietly sit in the presence of the Lord and allow him to sing over you. Whatever is restful for you, plan to do that thing or a series of things once a week. Sunday is usually the best especially after a great time of worship but sometimes not all of us have a free Sunday so we need to pick another day. The important thing to establish is that this day is as important to you as your work day. Tell people, let them know that you are establishing a Sabbath day in your week and you need them to respect that.

Don't listen to me, listen to our Father who only plans the best for us:

By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested[a] from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done. (Genesis 2:2-3)

It was later, with the people he had called to be his own that he established this day as the Sabbath, a day he made holy and blessed:

Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:9-11)

This was not a religious thing or a hard thing, it was done because it is how we were created, needing rest. It was established because of his love for us. And before anyone starts getting religious about it I remind you of what Jesus explained to us about this Sabbath:

“The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath." (Mark 2:27)

Jesus did a lot of good things on the Sabbath asking those who criticized him whether it was better to do good or evil on this day. It is a day of rest not a day of going comatose. We are still ruled by love so if someone needs us we are there for them. We can't do what the religiously-mind did in the day of Jesus and say, "Sorry, I can't help you in this time of need because it is my day of rest." Help them and then go back to your rest. If there is no love in it then there is no value in it.

So my friends, as a person who has been through burn out on a couple of occasions, I encourage you to follow the wisdom of our Father. Establish a Sabbath day in your week. Set aside the housework, the homework, the studies, the office work, the lesson planning or whatever it is that takes your energy. Instead do those things that renew your energy. Enjoy our God, family and friends. Play some games, fly a kite, read a book, take a walk, smell the flowers, breathe. God will renew your strength. He has promised:

Do you not know?
   Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
   the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
   and his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary
   and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
   and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the LORD
   will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
   they will run and not grow weary,
   they will walk and not be faint.
(Isaiah 40:28-31)

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