It happens to us all, life hits us full on at times. Life is speeding by and if we are not paying attention and getting proper rest and recreation it can bowl us right over before we know it. It is so easy to get caught up in life whether it is a prosperous time, a sad or grieving time, a time of great happiness or a time of trial in your life! Even for those of faith who find our hope in God and are lovingly shepherded by The Holy Spirit as we attempt to follow in the footsteps of Jesus are not immune to this. It is so easy to get caught up in doing things, good things; enjoying the company of others; serving others; working and so many other good and normal activities. Can I just say from firsthand experience, go for it! Get out there and give it your best but if you want to finish strong and do not want to grow weary in well-doing, don’t neglect the Sabbath! Mark 2: 27 Then He told them, “The Sabbath was made for man and not man for the Sabbath. 28 Therefore, the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.” HCSB We all need a break, rest. Our Heavenly Father knew this and for that reason He told us to rest every seventh day and to rest the land every seventh year! Almost ten years ago, I had the opportunity to spend two weeks in Germany. One of the things that stood out as a startling difference: most if not all shops, restaurants, etc. we’re closed on Sunday. This was true here in America in my youngest of years, also. Sundays there were quiet and peaceful, slow-paced and relaxing. Families and friends spent time together just enjoying each other’s presence. Today, most of us have bought into the rush of life, squeezing the most out of the day just like squeezing the very last little bit out of the toothpaste tube. We try to exist on the absolutely least amount of sleep possible so we can finish that project, watch the latest episode of our favourite show, put in just another hour at work trying to get ahead. The simple fact is that our bodies were not designed that way and after a while, we get weary and b. It may not manifest that way. It can show up in many other ways such as: being over sensitive, over-reactive, over-stressed. When this happens we can react to others, often those we love the most, in ways that are very uncharacteristic of our behavior. I believe that is why in 2 Thessalonians 3:13 ‘Brothers, do not grow weary in doing good.’ Why do we do this to ourselves? Have we bought into the got to have the latest and best now? Or perhaps, we simply want better for our kids: better education, better opportunities? Are we seeking to ‘make up’ for something we perceive someone needed from us that we just couldn’t or wouldn’t give? Are we just driven, seeking more? Are we motivated by fear of lack? Perhaps you are like I once was and just find it impossible to say, I’m sorry but no I can’t do that. The reasons are as endless as the as the waves in the ocean! Sometimes it even comes down to doubt. We may or may not doubt God’s goodness, or that He keeps His promises to His children. Even if we are completely convinced of His goodness, His promises and His love, we may question our own worthiness. 1 Peter 5: 4-7 in the Message says, ‘4-5 When God, who is the best shepherd of all, comes out in the open with His rule, He’ll see that you’ve done it right and commend you lavishly. And you who are younger must follow your leaders. But all of you, leaders and followers alike, are to be down to earth with each other, for—God has had it with the proud, But takes delight in just plain people. 6-7 So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; He’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God; He is most careful with you.’. Perhaps it is time to begin taking those Sabbath rests regularly. Maybe we can spend some of it quietly resting in His grace, researching in a comfy chair who He says we are in Christ and what He says about us. It is surprising how slowing down and spending a half hour or hour listening to your favourite worship music can refresh us and soothe our weary soul! Isaiah 40: 28-31:
Do you not know? Have you not heard? Yahweh is the everlasting God, the Creator of the whole eart. He never grows faint or weary; there is no limit to His understanding. He gives strength to the weary and strengthens the powerless. Youths may faint and grow weary, and young men stumble and fall, but those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not faint.