Thanksgiving just happened and we’re closing in on Christmas. To be honest, I almost blinked and missed it! Things at work have gotten so busy, I needed to put in more hours than I normally work. That means I haven’t been able to keep up with this 101 Days till Christmas Countdown on the Blog as I would have liked. And something happened that has me rethinking rest this season.
I ended up in the hospital overnight! Thank God, they sent me home on Thanksgiving Day and we were able to go to Disney’s Hollywood Studios that same night! We even enjoyed a Thanksgiving lunch with my hubby, kids, my parents, grandma and in-laws!
Apparently, I needed a break …
My mom was able to stay with me in the hospital overnight, while my husband stayed home with our kids.
She wisely reminded me that, “if we don’t listen to God when He says “rest,” sometimes He allows things to happen that, in a way, “force us” to rest. “~My mom
However, the “whiny daughter” in me wanted to push back on that! But MOM! I HAVE been resting!
I’m not currently involved in church in the same ways I’ve been in the past, working a full time job all week and then involved in church Saturdays and Sundays. We have been INSANELY busy in the past and she knows that.
This season, however, ever since we moved to Florida in April of this year, we haven’t even found a church yet. We’ve been visiting a few, but it’s way less stressful to simply show up to church, listen to the sermon and go eat lunch afterwards.
Our life has often involved getting to church early for rehearsals and leaving late after the service has ended. And during the Christmas season, the busyness simply ramps up!
But not this year — I thought this year we were taking a break and getting some needed REST.
Thankfully, our kids are enrolled in the sports they love. For my son, it’s 3 to 4 days a week of basketball, while my daughter does gymnastics 5 days a week. Yes, that keeps our family busy, but I don’t think it’s keeping me from “resting.” Or is it?
Just to give my mom the benefit of the doubt, and maybe consider the fact that I could potentially not be resting as much as I thought, I decided to do a little resarch. Here are a few definitions of “REST.”
- Cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, or recover strength.
- Be placed or supported so as to stay in a specified position.
- An instance or period of relaxing or ceasing to engage in strenuous or stressful activity.
- An interval of silence of a specified duration.
And even the Bible, God’s own word, says, “… Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
Ok, my mom was right. I have not been doing ANY of that.
Cease work? Nope, because when we’re home “resting,” there’s always some work to be “DONE.” Laundry. Dishes. Meal planning. Budgeting. Yelling at the kids to pick up their stuff up from the bathroom floor.
“Staying in a specified, supported position?” NOPE! I can’t sit still long enough to watch even one show on Disney+ these days. There’s just always something to be DONE.
“Relaxing.” (Hahaha!) Ok, now that I’m done laughing, I can’t remember the last time I stopped long enough to actually … relax.
I have been using a breathing app on my Fossil smart watch and on the Amazon Alexa before going to bed, to help me relax and wind down. I also usually read a devotional on my Bible app, or listen to a meditation on the Abide app. But is that a full “Day of Rest,” as God recommends in His word, The Bible? Nope. That’s more like 5 minutes. And I have a feeling my mom (and God) were trying to tell me that Ima need a LOT more than 5 minutes.
“Cease to engage in strenuous or stressful activity?” My whole entire LIFE often feels like a stressful activity. Hmmm, I think something is starting to click here.
“Silence.” (Again, HAHAHAHA!) I work in radio. Constant music and noise and talking and recording and meetings. There. Is. No. Silence.
At home, between two kids, a dog, a guinea pig (who actually does make noise) and so much happening all the time, nope, no silence there either. It’s even a struggle to have dinner electronics free (although I try!)
Hmmm… so I haven’t been resting as much as I thought I was.
I could have sworn that, since we are involved in fewer things lately that mean for sure I was resting more. Turns out, nope, I wasn’t.
I even read a book and wrote blog posts last year about the importance of the Sabbath and taking a “Hard Break!” It made sense! I bought in! Yes, let’s rest 1 day a week, every week! woohoo!
But apparently, somewhere between 2018 and 2019, the excitement of intentionally taking that hard break hasn’t actually happened. Woopsie.
Rethinking Rest: Can you relate?
Now that I’ve taken the time to step back for a minute and realize, once again, that I truly need to make time to rest, can you relate? I’d love to hear from you! Feel free to share in the comments how you find time to make rest a priority.
I may have neglected the practice of STOPPING all busyness and activity for too long. Time to put it into practice again! And I can’t think of a better time to do this than during the busy holiday season. Here’s to finding rest and true JOY in Jesus.
Laughing thru life,