Stress is among the top killers in america! People are more stressed than they realize and those that know it have most likely already had a breakdown and are exhausted. By that time it is too late and much damage has been done. It’s like dehydration, its altogether disorienting and can kill you. By the time you feel Thirsty it is already an indicator that we are dehydrated....my point is we should be proactive and not reactive, learning to thrive and not merely survive. We should be “hydrating” along the way and not waiting until its potentiality detrimental. We must be intentional and disciplined in life. Part of that discipline is a discipline of rest, relaxation, recovery, and recreation.
Life is built on various tensions; pressure and release, sprinting and resting, pushing and pulling, stopping and starting, death and life.....etc. There is wisdom to be learned from in the pattern of rhythms and timing. We can see needed variation and life cycles from the various seasons in nature.
We need to be aware of our personal, family, and business cycles of high output and match that or follow that with Low output. Perpetual high output without proper recovery leads to burn out and poor performance. Most of america is burned out. Are you? Are you headed that way?
If so, we need to understand why. How did we get there? We need to understand our thinking and philosophy of life, the things that drive us. Why do we think the way that we do and where did it come from? Is what we believe true...?
These are very important questions we should all continually ask ourselves in every area of our lives. What we believe will dictate what we do, and If we can understand this and grow in awareness we can learn to renew our minds in a way that leads us to a way of life that is good and wholesome; a way of rest. Its safe to say we all have ways of thinking in life that need to be reformed.
I believe all good theology and philosophy goes back to the beginning - If we look at ancient script about the beginning of man and time (the book of Genesis) man was created on the 6th day and made to live on the 7th day of God’s Rest. It was from that context that people would learn to work, lead, produce, and play. It started with the rest of friendship, intimacy, & joyful connection with God and each other. And this was before any “work was to be done” though man was also created to create and work as a joy and expression of God Himself. For man was created to be His representatives, both male and female.
People were made in the image and likeness of God and life was to be lived in intimate fellowship with God. From the context of being loved and taught by God Himself we were then to carry out our responsibilities. Being preceded Doing. This principle is key to life.
The wisdom of God's instruction teaches man to work 6 days and rest on the 7th. We also see 4 major feast times when the community of Israel would gather for sharing, worship, festivities, and celebration. The rhythm of life laid out with perfect wisdom had incorporated and disciplined times of rest, recreation, celebration, and recovery.
Even the Land, the ground from which produce came, was to be given a year of rest! Rest is wired into creation and we would be wise to re-integrate this into the rhythm of our lives and schedules. As we rest we grow and are empowered to produce more. We were created to create and produce great things in life.
Just like when you exercise - when your lifting weights or running or what not, that’s not when your muscles are growing, your actually destroying and tearing and stressing your body. It’s when you rest and recover that you actually grow and heal. Many people don't get the results they want because they don’t put a high value, prioritize, or a strategy for recovery and rest in place.
Digestion as well, works best in a state of rest. Eating mindfully is the key hear. Most eat on the go, eat in front of a screen, or are altogether disassociated from there food, they are just shoveling it in their mouth, barely chewing, and swallowing. No wonder why people are either under nourished and exhausted or overweight and exhausted. There is a wisdom in slowing down and your body knows it.
You were designed to function best from the place of Rest. How are you resting and recovering?
How would you describe rest? Let me submit to you that it is more than sleeping and “doing what you want”, though this may be a part of it.