21 You should do your work for six days, but on the seventh day you should rest. Even during plowing or harvesttime you should rest.
When I read this scripture, I am reminded to slow down and take a pause. Admittedly, I am a busy bee who is always in motion. My friends and family know I am particularly bad at resting. My excuse is that I take after my Dad. One of his favorite sayings was, “I’ll rest when I’m dead.” (Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that!) A particular command that Dad often gave his five kids – who wanted to sleep in on Saturdays – was, “Get up. You can’t sleep your life away!” My Dad was usually working and I learned the value of long, hard working days.
So it is through this scripture, that I remember the importance of rest. Don’t get me wrong, my Dad was also a great sleeper. He always seemed to fall asleep nightly with ease. He knew when to stop and enjoy. I still struggle with that. And we learned through him the value of rest, particularly on the Sabbath.
Biblically, I am further reminded of the story of Mary and Martha. (See Luke 10:38-42.) Jesus was not going to tell Mary to “Get to work!” Instead, Jesus was saying, “Martha, sit down and rest.” “Mary has chosen the better part, he said. There may be work to do, but even so, rest and connection is just as important.
We busy bees need to remember that connecting to God doesn’t just happen through the activities of life. Connection to the Divine happens when we pause. For me, what has caused me to rethink my go-go, busy bee status is realizing that resting is also about time to connect to my Creator. It is also why we take Sabbath together. By nature, I may still feel the need to be a busy bee, but now I’m learning to press pause.
By Barbara Carlson
For Pondering & Prayer
How’s your resting? Even when we are called to work in some capacity, how do you take a moment to pause? If resting and finding Sabbath is a strength for you, how might you support someone who struggles to rest? How might resting help you to connect to your Creator?
Prayer: Creator God, you know us when we labor and when we rest. You know our bodies and our needs and you remind us to rest in you. Not only do you call us to share our rest through Sabbath, but you help us to connect to you each time we press pause. Help us in the busyness of life to take this time to reconnect. Amen.