Have you been called to a season of rest?

by Susan Stilwell



                               

I’ve noticed a lot of quiet blogs and websites lately, and a good number of inactive social media profiles.

My website has been uncharacteristically quiet the past several months. Between my mom’s passing and my month in the Holy Land, I haven’t had much time (or inspiration) to be online. I manage to post on a couple of sites occasionally, but I decided to give myself some online breathing room this summer.

Image courtesy of marin / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of marin / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

A lot of us choose to slow down the pace during certain seasons, especially summers. Our homes are chaotic with kids and family, or our schedules are busy with projects and travel. But others of us are slowing down for other reasons.

Some of us hurt. We may ache physically and need the downtime to let our bodies mend. Others of us ache emotionally and need to pull away so our hearts can heal.

Some of us are attending to someone else who’s hurting. The Lord is using us to help provide strength to them during their trial.

Or maybe you’re like me and you’re just tired. Tired of being on the go. Tired of a routine (or lack of one). Tired of so much activity and visual stimulation.

All of those things–activity, lethargy, hurts, service, busyness–can take a toll on us if we’re not careful to listen to the Holy Spirit’s whispers to slow down.

Rests are biblical. When life and ministry took their tolls on His disciples, Jesus told them,

“Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”
~Mark 6:31b (NIV)

It wasn’t easy for the disciples. In this passage the demanding crowds met them in their quiet place, creating even more work for them to do. But after the feeding of the five thousand, Jesus did something interesting:

Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and
go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd.
~Mark 6:45 (NIV)

Israel landscape

Mount of Beatitudes

Don’t miss that: Jesus MADE the disciples leave.

Whether they felt obligated to hang around and help Jesus wrap up or were energized and wanted to stay and visit, Jesus made them leave because He knew they needed some downtime.

Seasons of rest are necessary, sometimes long overdue, and often easier said than done. I wrestle with all the things I should be doing; things that prove to the people around me that I’m being a productive member of society and getting things done.

Maybe you feel the same way. If God has called you to a season of rest, even if it’s just from social media, it doesn’t matter what the rest of the world thinks or says. I think Paul sums it up perfectly,

Live as children of light … and find out what pleases the Lord.
~Eph 5:8,10 (NIV)

If it pleases the Lord for you to rest this season, REST. With His blessing and ours.

Image courtesy Flickr Commons

Image courtesy Flickr Commons

Tweetable –> When the Lord calls you to a season of rest, REST and don’t worry about what people think. Via @5minutesforfaith

Email Author    |    Website About Susan Stilwell

Susan Stilwell is a wife to Steve, mom to Scott and Sarah. After that, she writes, teaches, blogs and speaks. If you want to see her get really excited, ask her about her travels to Israel! One of Susan’s favorite things to do is to chat over coffee. And don’t forget your smartphone and laptop — this former programmer is full of helpful hints! You can connect with Susan on her websiteTwitterFacebook, Instagram, or Google+

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Barbie July 27, 2014 at 1:34 am

Beautiful Susan, and I can relate. I’ve been in a season of rest. I want to be like that pup at the end of our post!

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2 dawn July 27, 2014 at 11:52 am

Oh, Susan! Refreshing, gentle words here today. I love the images you chose and the way you wove truth in a fresh , inviting way. I so feel God’s Spirit speaking to us all… we need to walk carefully, not to miss His refreshment. Thank you for your words.

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3 Laura Rath July 27, 2014 at 7:21 pm

“…rest and don’t worry about what people think.” – I like this because we do worry about that, don’t we? Whether the people are family members, co-workers, friends, or even blog readers…we worry about what people will think. But Jesus rested—-and He didn’t feel guilty about it! Neither should we. Great post, Susan!

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4 michael byrd July 31, 2014 at 4:37 pm

very moving Susan praise god !http://inyourheadradio.com

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5 Lisha Epperson August 8, 2014 at 12:25 am

I’m all over this Susan. Thank you for the spot on biblical breakdown.

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6 mary August 8, 2014 at 7:33 am

Oh, friend…YES! You hit the nail on the head!!! Just what I have been experiencing and it is like you gave me permission to be at rest. Assurance that it is OK. Thank you…wise words here.

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