Some of you may be wondering why I would be revisiting rest. Yes, recreation is REST! It may be because we have been heavily influence by cultures who either overachieve and underachieve. More often than not, American Christians overwork and under-rest. I am guilty, too. When I work for myself, I am my own wost task-master. But this week, I took a vacation. A real vacation! It got me to reflect on how important it is to take a break from daily demands, even if only for 2 or 3 days.
When we take a vacation, it gives us a chance to step away from regular stresses and demands. All too often, it is easy to justify staying at home to get some things taken care of that have been left go. I used to take some vacation time to clean, sort and pitch. When I went back to work, I did feel a sense of accomplishment. However, I didn't step away from the stresses and felt it. It also doesn't allow us to to fill the inner childish need to play or build lasting memories. When we go on vacation, whatever we leave behind will be there when we get back. All we need to do is enjoy when we get "there".
When we take a vacation, we go places and do things we don't usually get to do.How many times have you wanted to enjoy the rides at Disney World or see the sunset with palm trees on a beach? Most of us don't see or do that on a regular basis. How many times have you wanted to dance to Reggae music on a cruise or see the sites at the Grand Canyon? How about seeing a relative or friend you haven't seen for a very long time? I would suggest saving up the funds and doing it!
When we take a vacation, then we step back into our regular routine, that routine doesn't look
as bad as it felt
BEFORE the vacation. With this vacation, there were flight delays, a rental car lost because the place closed by the time we were in from our flight. Those things make us glad to go home where we know what to expect and where to go for what we need! However, vacations are meant for a short while. After the sunburns begin to peel, the laundry goes through the wash, and we gaze at the pictures of the memories shared, nothing feels as good as home again.
Jesus took His disciples out away from the crowds (Luke 5:16;Matthew 26:36; Mark 6:29-31, among several). He taught them while they relaxed. He knew they couldn't run 24/7/365. In His physical form, He got tired and rested. I liken rest and recreation to breathing. Try this: Fill up your lungs and hold your breath.... Now exhale... Inhale only a little... Now exhale fully. Just one small breath in and exhale... Did you want to fill up your lungs fully? Most likely! When we minister, work, etc, we exhale. When we rest, recreate, and take in God's Word, we inhale. We need to inhale as much as we exhale. Our lives need to breathe!