“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Matthew 11:28-29 CSB
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
Matthew 11:28-28 The Message
Good morning and welcome to a new week of Freedom Fighter blogs. I am very thankful for you today.
I just got back from a week’s vacation. I am a terrible “don’t-do-anything” on vacation kind of guy. I know it frustrates my wife and kids, but I have a hard time unwinding and doing nothing.
We left for the shore last Sunday after I preached two-morning services, and we came home yesterday. I tried hard this week to disconnect from the ministry, but that isn’t always easy.
And quite honestly, it took me until Friday morning to finally feel like I was gaining the victory over resting and relaxing, and then it was time to come home yesterday, and literally, I hit the ground running.
I am not sharing this with you because I am looking for a pity party. I am sharing it with you because I struggle with busyness and overload.
When I first came to America’s Keswick, I met a dear 90-year-old “filled with the Spirit” man of God who preached to me all the time that when I am “off” I need to be off and be with my family and take care of myself.
One Saturday morning, while on vacation, Guest Services called me and said that this man was frantically trying to reach me and was very upset that I was not answering my phone. Thinking it was an emergency, I called him, only to be blasted by him. He rebuked me for not answering his call.
I explained that I was off for the weekend and that he had been counseling me to disconnect when I am off and don’t answer the phone. He shot back at me – “That’s for everyone else. When I call you, I expect you to pick up the phone.”
Sometimes it is hard to disconnect and get rest because of the guilt put upon us by others and, most importantly, ourselves.
I grew up in a loving Christian home where it was almost a sin to do nothing. We were at church EVERY TIME the doors opened. The church was everything, and we did very little “family” time. Vacations were ministry time. For years my parents spent their vacation serving at the Boardwalk Chapel in Wildwood, NJ. Those summers were amazing – but it certainly wasn’t rest.
As I have been reading through the gospels, Jesus was a very busy man. His 3 ½ years of ministry were jammed packed with serving and working. But Jesus, AKA the Son of God, still needed time to break away to rest and get alone. Often His alone time was to pray and communicate with His Father.
Even His Father, who created the universe in six days, took the 7th day to rest. Why do I think that I can keep going and not rest and reset if the God of the Universe needed to do so?
Some of you can relate. Come on – don’t leave me hanging here. Do you struggle in this area?
We’ll unpack this some more next week, but I would sure love to hear from you. What has God taught you about resting?
The late country preacher Vance Havner used to say, “If you don’t come apart and rest awhile, you will come apart.” I am beginning to understand that after all these years.
Undivided: By Christ, in Christ, For Christ,
Email me: email@example.com
Written by Bill Welte, President/CEO of America’s Keswick: Bill has been married to his childhood sweetheart for 40+ years and has four married kids and 12 amazing grandkids. He loves music and is an avid reader.
Think About This: “To walk with Jesus is to walk with a slow, unhurried pace. Hurry is the death of prayer and only impedes and spoils our work. It never advances it.” ―