Relaxing Day

I have found that I have a tendency to go, go, go all the time, without stopping to take time to relax and recharge.  Take last month for an example.  I cannot think of a single weekend that I did not have something planned from the first weekend in September through the first weekend in October.  So, not only did I work all week long, but I didn’t take time to rest on the weekend either.  Is it any wonder that I ended up sick and it took me so long to get over it?

Now, don’t get me wrong – there was nothing that I took part in that was bad.  There are a lot of good activities that I took part in.  For instance, one of those weekends was spent at the Answers in Genesis conference – it was a full weekend, which started on Friday night and ended on Sunday night.  It was totally worth going to, and I don’t really regret going.  Another weekend, my girls had an over-night party at the church.  Not that I didn’t get to have some alone time, but it wasn’t really a relaxing time – I pretty much ran around trying to get stuff done that I normally wouldn’t be able to.  Another weekend was a brunch for single parents, which was held at our church.  And then last week was my birthday, so of course there was a party!  So, as you can see, my weekends were pretty busy.  I don’t get time during the week to relax because I, of course work every day.  So, that leaves Sundays, which are spent at church pretty close to the entire day (there are a couple of hours in between the service and our afternoon drama/choir practices).

All this is to show that we get caught up in DOING.  So, where in all of this is there a time for rest?  Isn’t rest important, too?  Obviously, the answer to this question is yes.  In fact, God commanded His people to rest.  He said, “You shall work six days, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during plowing time and harvest you shall rest” (Exodus 34:21, NASB).  In fact, God set the example of that at the creation of the world.  Genesis 2:2-3 says, “By the seventh day God completed His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made” (NASB).  Looks to me as if God thought rest was pretty important.  So, why do we spend all our time doing, instead of taking the time to rest?

When we do not take the time to stop and rest, we set ourselves up to fail.  Rest is the way our body recharges itself, the way it regains its energy.  If we do not take the time to rest, we keep ourselves from reaching our full potential.  When we do not get enough rest, our bodies and our brains do not work properly, causing us to make mistakes, get sick, and if deprived long enough, we could even die.  Now, my guess is that most of us would not allow ourselves to go until the point of death, but I do know many of us tend to push ourselves to the point of exhaustion.  This doesn’t do any of us any good.

Now, you may ask, why I would even take the time to write about this.  Well, I got to thinking about it because today, I got a chance to relax.  I slept in for the first time in a very long time.  Normally, I am up no later than 8 am on the weekends (I’m up at 5 am during the week).  But today, I slept in past that time.  I woke up feeling refreshed and ready to take on the day.  I got a chance to really spend time in God’s Word, without feeling like I was ready to fall back to sleep at any moment, and I could tell that I was REALLY in His Word, and not just going through the motions.  I got to type up my notes for the Bible Study I’m trying to write.  I got to play a few games on my computer.  I went to the library and checked out more books.  The most non-relaxing thing I did today, was to do our laundry – and that really didn’t take a lot of effort.

Today, I feel like I really LIVED.  I didn’t feel rushed or stressed.  I got to enjoy today, all because I took the time to rest.  If only I would do this more often.  I might find myself growing in so many ways.

So, what do you think?  What do you do to relax and recharge?  Do you do it often enough?  How could taking the time to rest and relax help you to grow?

~Gabby

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