The melodic chirping of a bird awakened me from my morning slumber. Reading in 2 Kings about the kings who did evil in the eyes of the Lord had ushered me right into sleep. With my head down, chin to my chest, I couldn’t fight it any longer.

It’s the miles, not the company, right? Trying to fit everything into the day is as familiar as the daily rising of the sun. We rush throughout the day until we collapse in bed at night, then force ourselves up the next morning to do it all again.

Once, I even fell asleep while talking to someone on the phone! How embarrassing.

What will it take to get us to slow down and rest?

Ceaseless activity is not part of God’s plan. Busyness will eventually catch up with us. There was once a man who fell asleep as he listened to the Apostle Paul preach. Problem was, he sat in a window and fell out of the third story. I wonder if his busy lifestyle finally caught up with him, too. He obviously needed rest. (Acts 20:9)

 Jesus taught us to rest by example. He also calls us to work wholeheartedly, but then to rest.

  • We can rest during trying circumstances. While in a boat with his disciples, Jesus slept during a furious storm that had seasoned fishermen fearful. (Matthew 8:23-27)
  • Removing ourselves from everyday worries and constant activities (even good ones) allows us to find rest and strength. Jesus knew when it was time to leave the crowd and headed to a mountain to pray and be alone. (Matthew 14:23)
  • Rest doesn’t always mean sleep. Resting in the middle of our journey just might present an opportunity to help someone else. Not only did Jesus stop to rest as he traveled through Samaria, that break gave Him an opportunity to meet with the Samaritan woman. Many Samaritans believed in Him as a result. (John 4:1-42)

In today’s world, rest remains a hard-to-find commodity. If we take the time to rest, we get a fresh perspective, a new outlook and renewed strength. It’s even vital for physical and mental health.

Let’s follow Jesus’ lead. Work in all our strength and power, and then take time to rest – and unplug. It might be just the thing that God uses to bless us with what is good and worthwhile.