America is about progress – we like to work and buy things. Time for rest and prayer is a luxury that we don’t often indulge. There is too much to do and too little time to do it. We over-commit and exhaust ourselves trying to be everything to everyone.
But we can’t keep treating rest and prayer like they are optional! We are being robbed of our peace, and it is time to take a stand.
So here are three great examples of why we should rest more:
1. God Rests – “…and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.” (Genesis 2:2)
We are made in God’s image. When we rest, we are meeting a need that God created us to have. This mention of rest speaks to its importance in our lives.
2. Jesus Rests – How many times does the Bible make a point of telling us that Jesus went off to pray by himself? It seems like every time the disciples turn around, Jesus has disappeared somewhere to spend time alone in prayer.
Jesus worked hard, of course, but He also took time to meet God in the silence. If Jesus, whose mission it was to save the entire world for all eternity, could find time to rest and pray, surely we can too!
3. Faithful People Rest – Even the most revered servants of God took time to rest and pray. Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta knew that rest and prayer were inseparable from a life of service when she said, “I don’t think that I could do this work for even one week if I didn’t have four hours of prayer every day.”
To think that we can serve without prayerful rest is like saying we can do it all without God’s help.
We are Christians. We want to serve, and we should serve. But we must also remember that our relationship with God is at the foundation of our service. And if we never pause to nurture that relationship, it will suffer — and eventually so will our service.
“If you don’t have time to pray and read the Scriptures, you are busier than God ever intended you to be.” – Matthew Kelley
So I encourage you this week to take some time for silent prayer and rest with God, even if it is only for a few minutes.
Read scripture. Sit in silence. God is waiting for you.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:10)