“If you have no time to rest, it’s exactly the right time.” ~ Mark Twain
Call it vacation, hiatus, break time, unplugging–whatever you call it, one thing is for sure, it will be a time of rest. There are times of taking off from work that don’t include rest. We pack all we can into the few days we have free. We don’t go to work, but we fill every minute with things to do. Don’t get me wrong, those kinds of vacations are fun and have their place, but so does having a time of rest. That’s what next week’s vacation will be for me.
We are blessed to have a place, a little cabin in the Maine woods, perfect for resting. It’s quiet and peaceful. We sleep in and wake up slowly. We take time to read and relax, two things our hectic schedules leave little time for. We will have some maintenance that will need to be done. And we may tax our muscles kayaking. But mostly we will rest, allowing our bodies, minds, and spirits to renew.
In searching for a quote on “rest,” I was happy to find that most of them came from the Bible. They were promises from God. He promised we will find rest in his presence. He promised a place of rest. He promised rest to the weary. In fact, he asks us to enter his rest, to lay down our burdens and rest in him. It’s a complete and perfect rest.
In caring for his disciples, Jesus tells them to rest in a way that appeals to me. In Mark 6:31-32, after a busy time of ministry, he says to them: “‘Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.’ For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. And they went away in the boat to a desolate place by themselves.”
Boats, check. Desolate, check. I hope to get a taste of that rest next week, relaxing by the lake, breathing in the fir-tree-scented air, and reflecting on the glory of God with every sunset. My friend Verna Bowman put it very well on her own blog (https://vernabowman.com/the-art-of-rest/) : Take long walks and listen to the trees. Read a book beside still waters. Take this time to refresh your faith and experience a sacred linger to visit the sanctuary of your heart. And notice the change.
Don’t expect to hear from me for a week, maybe two. I’ll be resting.