Pastor`s Pen


In the midst of busy schedules, we often find ourselves saying, “If only I could get a little
more rest!” Especially for the parents with young children, you definitely understand the
need and desire for a few more hours of sleep each night! As my family plans to be in
the States for the next month and a half, I thought it might be helpful to briefly discuss
rest. In the modern world, we often treat rest like it is somehow a bad thing. We try to
convince ourselves that more work will make us more productive, but that is rarely the
actual case. With longer and longer work hours, we find ourselves less and less
productive. Then we work even longer to get the work done, and our capacity for
productivity shrinks even more, and on and on this negative cycle continues. You may
find yourself asking, “Is there a better way?”

The Bible actually outlines lifelong rhythms of rest and work. God gave humanity 6 days
to work and the 7th day for rest. God also included seasons of rest for His people within
the Law. Jesus offers spiritual rest to anyone that is in Him, but we rarely apply this rest
to our physical lives. Do you ever wonder why you have such a low capacity to
accomplish tasks and also find yourself not being as productive as you would like to be?
Is it possible that this is the case because you do not rest as you should? How would
your life change if you actually began to practice rhythms of rest as God intended?
Would you find yourself with new opportunities to rest? Could perhaps our overworked
lives actually lead to less productivity and less capacity to get things done? Could
working less actually lead to more productive lives? Also what does our overworked
lifestyles say about our trust in God?

Now please understand what I am saying here. I am not saying that we should not do
our jobs or work hard. I believe that we should be the example in our workplaces and
our homes of people that work hard, but do we also take rest seriously? Either extreme
is not healthy. If you never work and always rest, then you are not living as God
intended and might be outright lazy. At the same time if you always work and never
rest, then you are also not living as God intended and might be trying to control every
aspect of your life without giving over control to God.

So how do we format our lives moving forward? Make small steps to see if God uses a
little more rest to give you increased capacity to work. I grew up with a saying in the
States that says, “less is more,” but we often tell ourselves that more is more. This often
leads us to press on and continue even when we have no capacity to continue. Is it
better to go to sleep at a decent hour or to stay up and work late into the night? Well
that might be productive for a few nights, but at what point do we find ourselves less
productive during the day due to lack of sleep thus requiring us to stay up later and later
during the night to make sure you accomplish your tasks?

This is a very practical challenge for each of us, but rest has great spiritual implications
in our lives. What do your rest rhythms tell you about your spiritual health? This is worth
considering as you think and pray about the best path forward. I pray God would even
use our rest for His glory and for our good.

In Christ,
Nick, Amanda, Julia, and Elizabeth Gagnon