ABC News recently reported that Americans are working harder and longer hours than ever before. And it’s true; we are busy. We face countless responsibilities, tremendous pressures – the emails and social media never end (unless you’re like me and you don’t do email). Sometimes this leads to a point of physical exhaustion or burnout. So what do you do to step back, to refocus, and to rest?
The Bible calls this ‘day of rest’ the Sabbath. For some, this term may sound a little too religious, or perhaps just a bit impractical when thinking about our hectic lives. Who really has time to take 24 hours to rest? And why should we even bother?
- God Rested. After God created the world, He rested and reflected on all that He had created. If God modeled it, we should follow it. Genesis 2:1-3
- God commands rest. The Sabbath is the fourth commandment mentioned in the Ten Commandments given to Moses. Exodus 20:8-11
- Guilt-Free Rest. God knows life is hectic with obligations and responsibilities pulling us in a million directions. So God gives us an opportunity to be renewed and refreshed. This in turn better equips us to do our jobs and to do them well. A weekly Sabbath is God’s gift to us. Mark 2:27-28
- Rest Refocuses. Taking a moment to look up from our busy lives allows God the chance to remind us that He’s in control. God is saying, “Pause. Breathe. Trust me, I’ve got it.” Matthew 11:28-30
- Sunday Sabbath. For those able to have the Sabbath on a Sunday, you may experience more of the spirit of what God intends: a holy day, a day of rest, worship, and fellowship. It’s called the Lord’s day because it’s the day that Jesus rose from the dead. For Jewish disciples, to change the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday is a testimony warranted by Jesus’ Resurrection (Colossians 2:16-17).
Hermon Wouk, an incredible author, describes the Sabbath this way: “For me, it’s a retreat of restorative magic.” I love that! Because the Sabbath is a gift. It’s a time to pause, step back and be refreshed. So what do you do to rest? To refocus? To refresh? We all could benefit from a regular Sabbath rest. Look at your schedule and choose a day this week to rest. After all, who couldn’t benefit from “a little restorative magic?”