Rest, Revisited

I spent last weekend doing nothing.


Well, not exactly nothing, but…virtually nothing of any great consequence.  I went to a staff dinner on Friday and a birthday party on Sunday night.  Between those two events, I watched movies and ate sandwiches and slept.  Yep…That was pretty much it.

I have a habit of staying busy to avoid whatever is that is creating difficulty or pain. In the last decade, I have had to stay REALLY  busy.  Sometimes the only way to not collapse in a heap is to keep moving and be as productive as possible.

And that’s where I’ve been.  Keeping my family afloat; ministering to anyone whose need crossed my path; finding work, working like it’s not going to last; looking for more work when it didn’t last; singing and serving…doing everything I could so that I didn’t have to deal with the lonliness and the sadness that creeps in anytime I slow down too much.

And then it dawned on me.  Now is a pretty good time to just be still for a minute.  I have a job I LOVE.  My kids aren’t working (for pay), but they are being productive and service minded and not doing anything to be ashamed of.There are good things on the horizon and I need to have a clear mind and a rested body if I’m going to have the energy for the next level.  I need to take my rest.

Three weeks prior, I let everyone know I would not be available for anything Friday, Saturday or Sunday, with the two exceptions of  parties on Friday night and Sunday night. Everything between was done from the comfort of my bed or my living room couch.  I watched animés with the boys and chick flicks by myself. It was GREAT!!!

But I must admit, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to go through with it.

I was concerned that I would not be able to deal with quiet moments.  I was too afraid of the thoughts I would have to contend with; all the things I was drowning out with sound of hustle and bustle.

Then I was given a catalyst. My peaceful household was violated with news from my blood relatives.  And I was instantly transported to my own words in, “The Trouble With Jonah.”

I know I am like a lot of people. I’m not seeking external drama, but it does come.  I am doing my best to quell the internal drama, but sometimes I lose a battle or two on my way to winning the war.

With news that was set to distract and upset me, I set off into my weekend of rest.  It actually propelled me into my rest.  I became too emotionally exhausted to entertain ANY thoughts.  It was time to make like a couch potato.

Sometimes you have to shut down.

I could not have survived the week I just experienced had I not shut down for that 42 hour period.  When the stress became the least bit overwhelming this week, Where a restless heart would have snapped, I had the wherewithal to reach out to people who knew how to pray or give a word of wisdom or comfort.  When my worry woke me up in the middle of the night,where a restless heart would have fought to go back to sleep,  I turned it on the devil and began to pray for my enemies as well as my friends, Where a restless heart would have complained about the present situation, I exercised my gratitude, making sure that the people that needed me the most as well as the people I need the most knew that I loved them and appreciated them.

Did it stop the fear and worry?  A little bit.  I still want this to be over.  But until it is, I will look back on that small little respite and be grateful.  God knows what you need. It’s important to let Him lead you into rest of your body as well as your spirit. It may not always look like you expect, but take it when it comes.

At the close of this Father’s Day, I want to thank THE FATHER for looking after His children and giving divine direction worthy of undivided attention and immediate obedience.   Father knows best.


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