Somewhere along the way in life I came to realize, somewhat to my dismay, that my sub-conscious sees my worth in what I do, not who I am. I value accomplishing things – it seems to validate my existence or something, I’m not quite sure.
Earlier this summer, I had surgery on my hip. This, after a three-year stint of not doing much other than work and school – a time in which I accomplished a head-spinning amount of work. After surgery, there is the forced, doctors-orders type of rest – Sabbath. Along with that prescribed rest, I also found I didn’t have the energy to accomplish much other than the minimum required of my day. I forced myself to get stuff done, and kicked myself for not accomplishing more. When my energy levels began to increase again, I realized that, in fact, God had given me a gift during that low energy time – the gift of Sabbath Rest.
1 Corinthians 10:31 urges us to do everything for the glory of God, whether it’s eating or drinking or anything else. Sabbath Rest is especially for the glory of God. As I began to realize the gift I had been given, I, as someone who values checking off the to-do list, beat myself up a little. But then, I gave myself permission to live into the rest, and spend more time with God. Part of my recovery is to just walk. Not fast, not for exercise, but for recovery. What a perfect way to spend time with God, in God’s creation, focusing on God. I spent more time just sitting with God in quiet or in meditation – listening for God’s voice. I began to cherish this extra time with God. And now that I’m coming fully out of my recovery period, I’m trying to keep some of that Sabbath Rest as part of my daily life, living into being a child of God, rather than a person who gets a lot of stuff done. I know that the to-do list will eventually take over again and that’s ok – God made me that way after all. But I pray that the beauty of that extra time with God will call me back to quiet places in the midst of the chaos of life.
God created the world out of chaos, and God rested in the midst of it. May you recognize the gift of Sabbath Rest when God presents it to you, and may you live into it fully, deepening God’s presence in your life.