As we continue to think about the rest we all need, there comes a point where we have to ask the question of why exactly this is a spiritual issue? Why should Christians specifically care about rest and getting enough rest through the day and through the week?
Perhaps we can start with the commandment:
Remember the Sabbath day and treat it as holy. Six days you may work and do all your tasks, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. Do not do any work on it—not you, your sons or daughters, your male or female servants, your animals, or the immigrant who is living with you. Because the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and everything that is in them in six days, but rested on the seventh day. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
First of all, this is the longest and most detailed of the Ten Commandments. God really wanted Moses to go in depth when it comes to this idea of Sabbath. And the central reason here in Exodus is tied to creation. God worked for six days, then took a rest on the seventh. That seems like a good formula for God’s people to follow.
Last night I met a new friend who was asking about me and my family. I told him that I was a drummer, and that I had twin boys at home. (I told him more than that, but hang in there!) He asked me at one point in our conversation if I thought that the boys would become drummers. And I got this unexpected rush of emotion. There was something beautiful about the idea that my boys would fall in love with something that I’ve fallen in love with. There was a connection there that I treasured.
Something about rest, something about living in to the habits and patterns that God set out for us, seems like it will connect us with God. This isn’t really that difficult to shape out. Take a weekend retreat with a youth group, where everyone leaves their cell phones off and just connects with each other. Surely, at least two or three students will say that they also really connected with God. Something about our rest, intentional and planned, connects us with God. Likewise, when we’re going run and gun, when we never step back and rest, it can become almost impossible to hear from our dear Savior.
So, what does a habit of rest look like?