Are you tired? How about bone-weary? Does “exhausted” describe you? Maybe it is to the point that all you are is a semi-functional zombie? When was the last time you woke up after a good night’s sleep rip-roaring and raring to go?
Even though we may not intend to, we live our lives full-throttle, and before we know it, we feel like we have been rode-hard-and-put-up-wet…WAY too many times. Rather than going from a reasonable “can” to a reasonable “can’t“, we go from way-before “can” to long-after “can’t“. We aren’t just burning the candle at both ends, we are burning it anywhere we can get it to burn. Is it any wonder that being sleep-deprived is the leading cause of lost-time accidents and injuries?
For many years, I was no stranger to 36-hour days, because what I had to do was more important than taking care of me. A lot of my days still start way too early and end way too late, but getting older hasn’t changed me, it has simply changed my mission. I wrote “It Is What We Do” to give you a taste of life in my “fast-lane“. I am also paying the price for all that abuse. I was in the hospital recently (Invincible), and part of the cause may have been sixty-years of bodily-abuse.
I live about two miles from Interstate-4, and the sound of the traffic is relentless, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. I also live about two miles from railroad-tracks. Trains go up and down those tracks at all hours of the day and night, seven days a week. I live about four miles from an electric power-plant, which is staffed around the clock, seven days a week. I also hear the sirens from police, fire and rescue vehicles at all hours of the day and night. Our world never sleeps.
Very few businesses are closed on Sunday, but one that is, is Chick-Fil-A, which is owned by a Christian. By contrast, McDonald’s never closes. Some businesses are open on a shorter-schedule on Sunday. Hospitals are open ALL the time, and most nurses work twelve-hour shifts. Do they really deliver optimal-care?
God didn’t intend for us to work the way we do now. Up til a couple of generations ago, people worked from sun-up to sun-down, and because the sun isn’t up all the time, they got more much-needed rest.
Is there a way to actually slow down? Many people think that they HAVE to work those long hours, but do they really have to?
God rested on the seventh-day of creation, not because He needed to rest, but to give us an example for how we should also rest. God codified that day of rest in the Ten Commandments.
8 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a sabbath of the Lord your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter, your male or your female servant or your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you. 11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:8-11)
I am NOT advocating a Sabbaterian-view of the Sabbath which requires that the day of rest be on Saturday, but what you do is between you and God. God gave us one day every week to rest and we should take advantage of and honor that gift.
Jesus got tired too, and there are several instances throughout the Gospels when He took His disciples away to a quiet place for some rest and relaxation. Jesus also spoke to our relentless drive:
28 “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)
I think that there are some valuable lessons we should take from this. First – We NEED to rest. Second – Our service to God and His kingdom shouldn’t be a burden. Third – We should be able to rest in Christ’s finished-work on our behalf and cease our striving to be “good-enough“. Are YOU ready for some rest? I sure am.