Thursday, June 29, 2017

Called to Rest


The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

Words have been slow here lately. I have plenty filling my journal pages…but words to share with you? Not so much.

I’ve been feeling for a while that perhaps God is calling me into a season of rest, although it’s taken me time to accept it. I question first if I’m just tired (which I am) or being lazy (it’s possible), but really, I’m worn out. From everything.

Emotional and mental fatigue takes its toll, bringing with it physical fatigue. And as you probably know, it’s hard to fight all three at once. So, I’ve stopped pushing back and I’m trying to rest as I feel God encouraging me to do.

Maybe you find yourself in the same place. Today I’m sharing a few things I’ve been doing to encourage myself during this time of rest.

4 Things We Can Do as We’re Called to Rest {Tweet this}

Spend time with God.

Start the day with Scripture—even if it’s just one verse. God knows what we need for the moment, and often, that one verse has stayed with me throughout the day.

Choose a daily devotional book to read with your morning coffee. It doesn’t have to be an in-depth Bible study, especially if you’re feeling too tired to think. But, a few minutes spent alone with God does wonders. In fact, it may be those few minutes that get you through the rest of the day.

I’ve started reading Coffee for Your Heart by Holley Gerth (previously published as God’s Heart for You.) If you’ve read any of Holley’s books, you know the soothing encouragement her words offer. Coffee for Your Heart reminds us of how God sees us, in 40 easy-to-read devotions, with prayer and personal reflection.

I’m also reading Soul H2O: 40 Thirst Quenching Devotions for Women by Sherry Stahl. I love the title—because it reminds me of how dehydrated I feel, and it’s also easy to read, with prayer and personal reflection.

Accept it.

Take advantage of the rest God is guiding you to. If He’s encouraging it, He knows we need it. (Usually long before we realize it ourselves.) {Tweet this}

Give yourself permission to do what you have to do and let the rest slide for a while. That means prioritizing the to-do list, and adding to it time for yourself.

Be present in the moment. Stressing about what you think you should be doing and/or worrying about tomorrow defeats the purpose of resting today. (Which, for me, leads to more stress.)

Do something you enjoy.

I’ve been reading more Christian fiction and mysteries this year. It’s the best way to get my mind to relax, and diving into a story I don’t have to think too much about is a nice escape from what’s going on around me.

Other mental getaways: take a walk, journal, listen to Christian music, bake, visit with friends…you get the idea. Find something you enjoy doing and give yourself permission to spend your time there. {Tweet this}

Get offline.

When I’m already exhausted, the online world can be too much for me. Whether it’s the news or anything on social media, the more I let in, the more it’s able to affect me in negative ways.

It’s also harder to not compare my life to the perfect-looking pictures I see on Facebook. So, before it draws me in, I have to limit my time there.

Less time spent online also makes it easier to be present in the moment. No matter how enjoyable my day is, comparison can ruin it within seconds. I have to remind myself that one picture doesn’t tell someone else’s whole story.

Rest—peace of mind or spirit, freedom from activity or labor, to take relief or respite.

Rest isn’t just physical, it’s also emotional and mental. It’s a necessary part of feeling rejuvenated and renewed. Feeling rested comes from letting our bodies and minds relax, as often as we need and for as long as it takes, regardless of all life throws at us. (I’m still working this.)

“Then Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”

What would you add to this list?

In Christ,
Laura

[Photo credit: FreeImages.com]


10 comments:

  1. You are so correct! Listen to your body. After finishing a year of treatment, my body and spirit cried for rest - which I was unwilling to do. Then my daughter asked me, "What if the energy you're expending unnecessarily is the energy you could be using to heal?" That god me thinking. So, I rested.

    My dear, take your time. I learned to sleep, lay down, listen to Him and blog, yes blog. But that was what worked for me. My blog is a small blog, so it isn't much work. I loved the fact that I was - hopefully - ministering to others.

    I would add music, creating and gardening to a "time of rest". Dino's music has always ministered to me. Crocheting or hand/machine sewing mindless projects soothes me. Gardening makes me feel so close to God!

    I wish you blessings of peace of mind, peace of spirit, rest for your body and soul and joy! Take good care!

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  2. Very wise thoughts you have shared, Laura! Especially this line: "Less time spent online also makes it easier to be present in the moment." Being fully present is something I'm continually having to work on ...

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  3. Laura, may God bless your season of rest. I'm right in the middle of one myself. Just wrote a whole post about it, too. Apparently it's a theme lately. I've read a few posts on the topic today. Great tips, thank you. I'm still struggling to remember what being still feels like. Right now, it feels awkward, but necessary. :) I pray your still-season refreshes and re-centers you. ((hug))

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  4. God may be calling, but I don't always listen and obey. My biggest overall rest and is when I listen and obey. To rest or to action, obedience provides the biggest rest/peace of heart. Blessings on your good reading time!

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  5. You said doing something you enjoy but I would add ensuring it complements what you are resting from. For example if you are resting from blogging, I would suggest doing something in nature like gardening or taking walks in a park.

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  6. I needed to read this today, Laura. It's confirmation for what God has been laying on my heart. I don't know what else I would add to this list. Sleep is good. :) I am going to finish getting my ducks in a row and then get some rest. Enjoy your time resting. I'll be praying for God to revitalize you in every area. God bless you!

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  7. Laura, thank you for the graphic. While the entire post is encouraging, it was the graphic which spoke exactly what I needed for this day. May you enjoy this season of rest! Blessings!

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  8. Dear Laura, sometimes I think as women of God need to give ourselves permission to be weary. Your reminders for rest are just what I am needing in order for the Lord to "restoreth my soul". Thanks and blessings in your rest!

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  9. I know this may sound strange, but I allow myself to have a good cry when I am feeling exhausted and overwhelmed. I tend to hold all of my emotions in, you know, be the strong one. I know that God is here to catch my tears. I understand about not having words to share. Most weeks I survive just with my link up post, but that is okay with me. I write when the words come and realize that some seasons will be slim. Blessings!

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    Replies
    1. It doesn't sound strange at all Barbie. I do the same thing with the crying. In fact, I was just thinking about it this week - that God catches my tears. Thanks for visiting and commenting!

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Thank you for sharing your thoughts!