Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,
During Advent I will share with you themeditations from one of my favorite Advent books by Beth A. Richardson, titled Child of the Light. I hope you enjoy them.
One Who Gives Us Rest
Let us find our rest in thee.
We welcome a God in whom we can find rest. These hopeful words comfort us during a season when we seem to be always rushing, always busy, always tired.
God calls us to rest, to take sabbath time in order to recreate our spirits when they have become weary. Even God, the Almighty, took time to rest after creating the heavens and the earth. "On the seventh day God finished the work that [God] had done, and ... rested on the seventh day .... So God blessed the seventh day and hallow it, because on it God rested from all the work that [God]had done in creation" (Gen. 2:2-3). Sabbath time does not have to be limited to one day of the week. We can choose to weave special sabbath time throughout the week.
Who am I to say that I don't need rest, that I can keep adding activities and commitments to my calendar and tasks to my task list? I am increasingly alarmed by the stimulation of today's electronic world, by the fact that I rarely have time apart, disconnected from my cell phone or my e-mail. I am available 24/7 to the demands of the world. No wonder I am weary and overwhelmed!
Weekends, including , are the time to catch upon home and family tasks. The laundry needs washing; the house needs cleaning. I have to remember to schedule time for family and friends. If I lead in worship morning, it seems more like work than spiritual rest or renewal.
When I do find myself disconnected from electronic communication, I am anxious about being unavailable. What if someone needs me? I wonder. It's as if the world revolves around me and might fall apart if I'm not available to help. (It sounds like I think I'm supposed to be God or something.)
We welcome a God in whom we can find rest. A God who gently calls us to a countercultural practice-disconnect. God calls us to take time apart, to turn off the cellphone (not just put it on silent mode), to avoid checking e-mail, and to rest in God. Slow down. Sit. Rest. Empty oneself. Listen. Stop multitasking. Concentrate on the one true thing-God.
Jesus the teacher says to us, "Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light" (Matt. 11:28-30).
Blessings this Advent!
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