Saturday, 6 November 2010

REST - it is a commandment, not a recommendation!

Rest. Something that is not too freely available to parents, especially those with young children, yet so necessary, and a biblical principle. Many of us are trying to work five days a week, raise families, be a wife, husband or partner and maintain relationships with family and friends – in essence cramming nine days into seven each week.

As I lay in my bed this morning feeling guilty that I hadn’t got up and written the thought for the week I had to sternly remind myself that I had to rest. The world wouldn’t stop turning because I hadn’t done it! Even God rested – and He tells us to rest too!

Genesis 2:1-3 (New Living Translation)
So the creation of the heavens and the earth and everything in them was completed. 2 On the seventh day God had finished his work of creation, so he rested from all his work. 3 And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, because it was the day when he rested from all his work of creation.

Exodus 34:21 (The Message)
21 "Work six days and rest the seventh.

Rest is a precious commodity for those with children of all ages – as I am beginning to find out. I smugly thought that now my children were a bit older they would sleep in, which they do. However, I now have to stay up late quite a few nights of the week in order to be mum’s taxi and pick them up from where ever they are, and then I still have to get up early to get them and myself up for school and work. Therefore losing sleep at both ends of the day – argh!

There are never enough hours in the day for busy parents, who are often working as well, but what I do know is that there should always be enough hours for rest. Without it we can experience physical symptoms such as weakness, lack of energy, tiredness, exhaustion, passing out or feeling as if you are going to pass out,
palpitations, dizziness, shortness of breath and many other things. Looking after our bodies should be our number one priority or these symptoms could lead to something worse.

God isn’t recommending we rest – it is a commandment. We have to do it in order to look after ourselves and in turn we will be healthy enough to be able to look after our families. I haven’t been feeling very well lately, partly I know because I have been totally overdoing it. So I am nagging myself here as well. Rest restores your body and your mind. God loves you and wants what is best for you, He is a good Father. So listen to your Father in Heaven and rest. Work out with your other half days when you can take it in turns to have a lie in, treat yourself to an early night (maybe with a hot bubble bath thrown in for good measure), take time out with a good book or dvd. Find some way to just chill out and relax. God says to rest for one day out of seven. That is 24 hours. It may not be possible to do that all in one day, but spread out over a week it is possible. Even more precious you could try to do it with your other half, then you will know that you are both well rested and ready to face what the world has for you.

Look after yourselves – your body is the only one you have, don’t wear it out too soon.

Matthew 11:28 (New Living Translation)
28 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.

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