Restoration is the Fruit of Rest
We all need rest. We may try to deny or ignore it, but it’s part of our intricate design. God modeled rest for us when He created for six days, and then rested on the seventh. He didn’t need to rest, but He wanted us to see that rest is good. It’s restorative. However, as leaders, rest is often the last thing on our to-do list and the first thing to get pushed to the back burner when something more pressing arises. We are quick to fill our downtime and schedule our Sabbath with “just a few things that need to be done.”
But we must remember that God created rest as a way for us to connect with Him and enjoy His presence. Rest is where God does the healing work of breathing life into our bodies and our minds. It’s where He restores our soul. In Psalm 23, David writes about God restoring his soul as he lies in green pastures beside still waters. If David hadn’t embraced God’s prompt to rest, he would have missed that beautiful and praise-worthy experience. When we ignore our need to stop and rest, we miss out on an opportunity to receive from the Lord.
Leaders, let’s not miss the restoration God has for us by foregoing rest in favor of our to-do lists. It’s too important. God longs to pour into us, but it is up to us to position ourselves to receive from Him. That requires us to create margin in our lives and in our schedules so we can stop and rest. Ultimately, when we are rested, we are of more benefit to those around us than that thing we may have checked off our to-do list.
Rest can look different for everyone. It doesn’t necessarily mean sitting and doing nothing. We are all uniquely created to connect with God in different ways, and the ways in which we rest can look different, too. Rest can mean walking down the street, breathing in the crisp air as the fall leaves crunch beneath your feet. It can mean sitting under a soft blanket by the fire, sipping something warm and listening to worship music. It can mean taking time to journal about what the Lord has been doing in your life. Whatever that looks like for you, it should mean creating space to meet with God and hear from Him. He promises that when we lean into Him, He will not only replace what’s depleted, but fill us to overflowing so that we can honor Him and make His name great.
In our time-starved society, it’s not often that we stumble upon an opportunity to rest. It more often requires intentionality. It may require us to establish and maintain boundaries in our calendars. We may have to sacrifice some good things to make space for a greater thing. Take a minute to schedule some time for rest this week, and protect that appointment, knowing that God will meet you there and provide the soul restoration you need to continue to do His work and further His kingdom.