So, it’s been five months since I moved to Utah… And it finally hit me… During the last week, I finally came down with a nasty cold bug. It hit me hard, knocking me down with a fever for a couple days… I haven’t been this sick since I accidentally took too many Ibuprofen pain pills back in Zambia last September!
It caused me to reflect…
Five months in and the seeds that I began planting back in March are beginning to bear fruit… I’ve found a home church, small group, new friendships, the blessing of a good job, new purpose… My community is taking root. All that cultivating is paying off, and my body is telling me to take five, and rest.
But I’m like the Energizer Bunny… Fear of missing out keeps me going and going and going and going…
I’m reminded of a lesson I learned back in Bible College… As we studied Genesis, the professor was quick to point out the significance of the wording of the first chapter…
“…and there was evening and there was morning—the first day…the second day…the third day…”*
That phrase is repeated after every creative work God did each day. Can you see it?? Can you see the wording?? First came the evening, then came the morning…
All my years growing up in church I thought each day started with the morning and ended with the evening. But, no… According to Moses, who wrote Genesis, the day begins when we fall asleep… As he reiterated in Deuteronomy, “The Lord himself goes before you…”**
In the silence and stillness of the darkness of night, God goes about His work, preparing the way for us and the day ahead… When sunlight streams in over the Eastern hills, we awake to see what He has done and to join Him in the work He’s already set aside for us… After all, “…we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”*** You see that?? God has good works for us to do… He prepared them in advance of our arrival!
Similarly, consider the workings of the human body… When we’re ill, wounded, broken, what are the doctor’s orders?? What is it he or she prescribes? Rest. Stillness. A cessation of work. Why? So that the body may mend itself and we might find health again.
Who would have thought that rest would be so productive?! And yet, let us consider the celestial cycle of our day and the inner workings of our bodies as a reminder of the importance of rest. Even as many of us are gearing up for the busyness of the new school year, do what you can to find time in your day or week for rest… Even if it is only a moment of stillness, let us find health and preparation for all that’s ahead.
pc: Sarah Coffey, Ndola, Zambia