April 21, 2021
Hope your day is going well. We just got to the Staybridge in Knoxville after staying at my brother Paul and Alison’s last night. We had a wonderful time with a steak dinner, 2 games of scrabble, a beautiful walk and time to catch up. Lots of traffic today and we are going for a peaceful walk now before relaxing in our very spacious room that was a gift!
Devotions from Judy’s heart
Sometimes the most spiritual thing we can do is take a nap. Maybe we fill bone tired but we keep going, although we’d really like to curl up and just sleep. We often fail to listen to our body and we keep on the busy treadmill until we get exhausted. Somehow, we think it is more spiritual to have constant activity than to experience the natural rhythm of work and rest. Even the Lord took a sabbath day to rest, and why do we think we can skip times of rest and not feel the effects? Ruth Barton writes in her book about how important it is to pay attention to our tiredness and fatigue and learn to rest in Him. Often our tiredness numbs us to our emotions and we don’t feel much of anything. That is not a good place to be. When we still lived on the lake and pastors and other retreatants came to Canaan’s Rest for retreat, so often they would need a good nap before they were ready to spend time opening up to the Lord. Often it was the whole first day that they felt extremely tired and needed to get rejuvenated. We would tell them to sleep until they felt refreshed as that was preparation of dialing down so that they could hear the Lord speak to them. Barton gives the example of Elijah, after his big contest with the 400 prophets of Baal. Afterwards he felt depleted and went to the wilderness and laid down under a boom tree and slept. God just let him sleep and then woke him up to eat and drink and had him sleep some more. Elijah was so worn out that it would have been hard for him to find God until after he got rested. We don’t have to be hard on ourselves when we give in to sleep, but use the opportunity to get rested and be emotionally strong again. Otherwise, we lose touch with who we are in the Lord and what we are called to do. May Elijah’s story help us know how to rest our body, soul and mind and get energized and refreshed and ready to draw near to Him. Jesus invites us and says in Matt. 11:28-29 (The Message), “Get away 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.”
Challenge for today: Take time to notice your weariness and talk to the Lord of how He would have you restored.
Blessings on your day and prayers and love, Judy