Work and Rest

Winter by Andrew Wyeth

It's winter. The field is plowed and it's time to regroup for the next season. On a farm or ranch, the winter is the time to rest. This season of rest is vital to regeneration, creativity and productivity.

But front and center in the picture is a very agitated young man. His tense face and body movements speak of a person not at rest. After days of hard work and little rest one notices a dryness, an inside barrenness like the field in this picture. When you look at this field you see no green, no animals grazing, no plants -- just bald barrenness.

Resting is part of the same coin as working. They are not opposed to each other but necessary complements of one another. Work without rest is a recipe for burnout and leads to poverty of soul and spirit. All rest and no work makes for a lazy sluggard with the likelihood of poverty-- physically as well as spiritually.

What's our answer? God gave it to us when He said, "On the seventh day, having finished his task, God rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, because it was the day he rested from his work of creation." Genesis 2:2-3

God set the pattern. He worked six days and then he rested. If God felt it important to do this should we not at least consider that our violation of the cycle of work and rest might be at the base of our unrest?

If Sunday has become a day to catch up and run errands you will become a person in perpetual motion. Like the youth in this picture you'll have an agitation and intensity in your life that will affect everyone you live with including yourself.

Rest must start with a decision to trust God for the things you haven't been able to get done and then leave them in his hands. Rest is a decision that the world will not be the one to drive your life.

If your life is under great strain and stress from constant movement why not consider God's plan for your own? Make a decision to adopt God's plan for six days of work and one day of rest. (Exodus 34:21).

When the world offers us little or nothing we are meant to look outside of it back to our creator who is the inspiration for all life.

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