Work or rest? Business or break time? Study or sleep? These are the choices we are constantly facing, but is there a right answer?
In my first couple of years as a student at university I was a bit of a ‘Yes Man’ (feat. the Jim Carrey film). I filled my time with everything I was asked to be a part of. By Christmas of my second year I was on the CU committee, Captain of the Ultimate Frisbee team, on 5 separate rotas for church, had an active social life and was, on top of all that, attempting to complete my degree.
Life was moving so quickly in the busyness that I stopped reading my Bible, didn’t pray (unless it was part of a role or a rota) and didn’t rest in the way I should have. Exhausted and stressed I finally took the advice of those around me and began saying no to certain tasks. I stepped down from the CU, passed on the baton of Frisbee captain, and reduced the number of rotas I was on at church. At first I was worried that me serving less would feel like I was less part of my local church, but I actually discovered that being served as a member of the church and resting in worship only brought me deeper into relationship with God and community with others around me.
At Fusion there is a saying, “watch your body not the clock”. We also keep time set aside for “afternoon tea”. In other words, resting is given a place of great importance. And yet I often find myself clicking back to emails and documents during these ‘breaks’. Now of course It is important to get work done, to stay focused and committed to goals. Sometimes work requires what is called a ‘hard graft’, a committed stretch of time dedicated to get tasks done. We live our lives according to the ‘hard graft’, and yet God calls us not to lives of busyness and stress under our workloads. He calls us instead to rest in his spirit, to pray always and to not “rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat-- for he grants sleep to those he loves.” Psalm 127:2
Matthew 11:28-30 also says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, 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.”
God says that he WILL give you rest. We should take it. We do not need to feel guilty for not working nonstop. Rest in God as the spirit rests in you.