{re}fresh

Tag: rest

Sabbath Rest

by Rob Dunne

Image by Bart Soverijns
Flickr.com_35732976723_507847d286
CC BY-ND 2.0

[B]ut in the seventh year there shall be a sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a sabbath to the Lord. You shall neither sow your field nor prune your vineyard. Leviticus 25:4

When I was in high school, relatives from Ireland came to visit us. They spent a week with us, a week with my aunt and a week with my uncle. Then they enjoyed several weeks of sightseeing. All in all, they were on vacation for a whopping six weeks! Now that is what I call a vacation!

Here in the United States, we have forgotten the importance of downtime. Rather than taking weeks off for vacation, we take one week or a few days. Making matters worse, we bring work with us. That drive is not healthy for the body, mind or soul.

God understands the importance of rest.

Read the rest of this entry »

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The Best Rest

by Robin Puchala

Image by Diana Robinson
Flickr.com_41865289301_8b95390140
CC BY-ND 2.0

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10

Vacations loom large as colorful sunsets fire up our evenings and warm, inviting sunshine bathes us during the days. (Ahh, breathe a deep sigh of relief).

When I was a little girl, my family rented a cottage a block or two from the beach in early August. All summer I waited with great anticipation to smell the salty sea air, run and squish my toes in the soft, wave-beaten sand, and swim, splash, or body surf in the waves. It was my time of rest and refreshment.

In Matthew 11:28 (TPT) it says, “Are you weary, carrying a heavy burden? Then come to me. I will refresh your life, for I am your oasis.”

Ponder those words. Read the rest of this entry »

3 Steps to Scheduling a Soul-cation

by Dawn Aldrich

Image by Cristian Bortes_Flickr.com_4987916470_ef94f0d7bb
CC BY-ND 2.0

I anticipate summer all year, yearning for sunny days and warm temps when I can throw off my jacket, fling off my shoes and plant my feet on the cool green grass of my back yard, or bury them under the hot sand of the seashore. or swing them off the side of shade-covered hammock.

Summer’s when I reacquaint myself with nature, close up; when I dig in the rich soil of my vegetable garden and smell the sweet scents of the phlox growing by my back deck. It’s when my work seems more like play and the daylight hours linger long enough to make me tired. A good tired. A tired that says, “That was a good days work,” or “You played hard today.”

Summer rejuvenates and revives me and reminds me I’m part of something bigger.  Read the rest of this entry »

But I’m not tired! or When we act like a toddler

by Dawn Aldrich

Tantrum by Yong Thye
flickr.com_4041515933_2acb86dd84_CC BY-NC 2.0

He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul. Psalm 23:2-3 NASB

We’ve all seen it. Every toddler does it. When someone mentions the “N-word” they stomp their feet and declare, “I don’t want a nap! I’m not tired!”

And don’t you find yourself saying, “Oh, please. Would someone send me to bed for a nap? Pretty pleeeease?” Well, yes, I say that all the time…er…except when God asks me to rest. That’s when I take my toddler stance: place my hands on my hips, form the best pouty-face, stomp my feet and say, “But, God, I’m not tired!”

Can anyone else relate? Why do we do that? Read the rest of this entry »

Taming the Busy Monster

by Dawn Aldrich

3-monsters-by-larry-wentzel_flicker-com_6367725285_0884ed4c47_z.jpg_CC BY 2.0

3-monsters-by-larry-wentzel_flicker-com_6367725285_0884ed4c47_z.jpg_CC BY 2.0

…keep my Sabbath days holy, for they are a sign to remind you that I am the Lord, your God. Ezekiel 20: 19b-20
Rest. Simply stop.

But, it’s not always that easy is it?

Society screams above God’s whisper to rest and shouts “Go! Go! Go! Don’t stop, keep going!” It’s like we measure success by how busy we are until there’s nothing more left to squeeze out of us by day’s end. And the worse part? Society wants us to repeat that every. single. day. Read the rest of this entry »

I’m His daughter, not His worker

by kerriebutterfield

I Have a Dream by Elvert Barnes Flickr.com_31921789_53cdaa2154_z.jpg_CC BY ND 2.0

I Have a Dream by Elvert Barnes
Flickr.com_31921789_53cdaa2154_z.jpg_CC BY ND 2.0

We had been living in Australia for 6 months when we visited a lawyer to facilitate buying a house. When we arrived, it was slightly unusual for us, because it wasn’t an “office”. We drove up a long, windy driveway to home perched in beautiful wine country. We knocked on the front door and for the next hour got a tour of a beautiful and amazing working ranch that also functioned as a lawyer’s office. He invited us to sit and have a “cuppa” with him and as he did I could feel my anxiety growing as I was distracted by how much time this was taking. All we needed was to sign 3 documents, but this was taking forever.
As I sat, mentally hurrying him along, the Holy Spirit said to me, “What’s your rush? You need to shift gears and slow down because you are missing out on my agenda.” In that moment, I realized He was talking about this specific situation, but He was also talking about the way I was operating daily. I had become so task oriented that I was missing out on His agenda to love people because I was focused on my “to do” list, not His “to love” or “to enjoy” list. Read the rest of this entry »

More Than Hearing: Soul Life

by Dawn Aldrich

LivingWater

Blessed is the man who trusts me, God, the woman who sticks with God. They’re like trees planted in Eden, putting down roots near the rivers… Jeremiah 17:7-8a The Message

One by one, cool mornings gather – sneak between our flip-flopped days. Summer scorched edges line the garden beds and pile beneath the trees. Back-to-school bargains fill our closets and drawers. We trade loose cottons for warm wools and bare toes for socked feet.

I think of all those lazy, carefree summer days gone by as autumn rushes in, clutters the ground and my calendar. Busyness pushes her way into every day, overrunning God’s presence – threatening soul death.

God describes self sufficient, busy people as tumbleweeds in the desert – roaming aimlessly with no roots. But…

God restores soul-life

Those who trust in Him – stick with Him – they are like trees replanted in Eden (paradise), rooted near rivers – “Never a worry through the hottest summers, never dropping a leaf, serene and calm through droughts, bearing fresh fruit every season”(Jeremiah 17:8b)

I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather be a strong tree, rooted in paradise, planted near living water, serene and calm, bearing much fruit than an aimless, tumbling tumbleweed in the hottest desert.

How?

Ø  God replants us in paradise. Sin uproots our relationship with God, like in the Garden of Eden. But Jesus came to restore that relationship through his death and resurrection. Romans 10: 9 say, “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Ø  God supplies us with living water. Like trees, our souls need living water to flourish. Throughout scripture, God refers to himself as the spring of living water. If we stay rooted in Him by reading His Word, (the Bible) and learn to abide in Him – listen, pray, worship, we cannot help but thrive, flourish and bear fruit. God is our source of life.

Ø  God requires we rest and worship. Even God rested. At the end of creation, he looked around at all his work and said, “It is good” and then, he rested. He saw how good rest was and He required it of us: “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy” (Exodus 20:8). It was still important to God in Jeremiah’s time:

“‘This is God’s Message. Be careful, if you care about your lives, not to desecrate the      Sabbath by turning it into just another workday, lugging stuff here and there. Don’t use the Sabbath to do business as usual. Keep the Sabbath day holy, as I commanded your ancestors’ ” (Jeremiah 17: 21-22).

In our fast-paced, cluttered, 24:7:365 worlds, let’s be mindful to keep our souls rooted near the spring of living water where soul-life flourishes in perfect rhythm between work, worship, and rest.

Prayer:

Father God, make us mindful of you throughout our busy lives. Tug at our hearts to slow down when we’re entangled in the demands of the day. Help us to carve our time alone with you so that you might fill us with soul-life that comes only through the infilling of your precious Holy Spirit. 

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