We grow up as children being ‘sent to bed’.
It is a rare child indeed who keeps track of the time, makes the necessary preparations, and then cheerfully announces “Good night, I’m off to bed.” at the appointed hour. (Actually, if you know of such a child, please inform me that such a being exists.)
One of my children used to respond with the direction “It’s time for bed.” with the statement “But I’ve been good.” as if her nightly rest was some form of punishment and her parents were only waiting for slumber to overtake her before we threw some sort of party. She thought her rest meant that she would miss out on something.
On some occasions late nights can be negotiated. But parents know that night after night without adequate rest will reap a harvest of dysfunction in their child. They need their rest (as do we all) and parents must insist that though their child “does not feel tired”, consistent and appropriate sleep is necessary for them to be capable of their best.
This form of self-discerned rebellion against rest resides deeply in the human nature. God created humanity and commanded them to Sabbath, to rest, one day in seven. Fallen humanity insists on portraying this as a punishment, a denial of opportunity, an infringement on their freedom. In effect we all assert “We’re not tired.” or “Why are we being punished?”, and act as those who know ourselves, our frames and our capacities better than our Creator, who also cares for us with the love of a perfect father.
Next time a child looks at you with slightly darkened eyes and their smooth brow pushing down to form a slight wrinkle at its intersection with their nose, agitation and immature rebellion raising their vocal tone as they crossly assert “But I’m not tired!” imprint that image in your mind and recall it when you are tempted to respond to your heavenly Father’s call to Sabbath with your own assertion of “There’s just a few more things that I really need to get finished today.”

These thoughts were provoked by reading the following quote on Darryl Dash’s blog, DashHouse.com.

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From Sabbath: Finding Rest, Renewal, and Delight in Our Busy Lives:

The God who made the Sabbath is not a cranky schoolmaster, always forbidding, coercing obedience, and watching sniveling subjects slinking about in cowardly compliance. The Sabbath commandment comes from a kind, wise teacher who does not like to see us suffer. Let me make it easier for you, God says. Some things at first may seem expedient, or important, or profitable – but in the end, they will bring you suffering. If you work all week and forget to rest, you will become brittle and hard, and lose precious nourishment and joy. Forgetting the Sabbath is like forgetting to unwrap the most beautiful present under the tree.

If we forget to rest we will work too hard and forget our more tender mercies, forget those we love, forget our children and our natural wonder. God says: Please don’t. It is a waste of a tremendous gift I have given you. If you knew the value of your life, you would not waste a single breath. So I give you this commandment: Remember to rest. This is not a life-style suggestion, but a commandment – as important as not stealing, not murdering, or not lying. Remember to play and bless and make love and eat with those you love, and take comfort, easy and long, in this gift of sacred rest.

2 thoughts on “God Knows You Need To Rest

  1. Engine says:

    Having just done a huge study on the whole Sabbath issue, I have come to the conclusion that there is nothing biblical about Sunday Worship, which you call the ‘Lord’s Day’, but rather it is a Tradition of Roman Catholicism carried over by the reformers.
    The Lord’s Day is only mentioned once in scripture in Rev 1:10, and if we let the bible answer itself, we can clearly see the Lord’s Day has always been the 7th day Sabbath, (Mark 2:28, Isa.58:13, Ex.20:10).

    How long will Churches stay stuck in their Traditions? How long will they disobey scripture and follow the Traditions of men?

    Are you ready to make a stand for the truth Gary?

    Your brother in Christ
    Eli Jameson

    1. gjware says:

      Greetings Eli ~
      I’ve published your comment here, though I’ve looked again at what’s written above and didn’t see any mention of Sudnay worship or the Lord’s Day, so it’s not really a relevant comment to this post, which is on the need for sabbath.
      I take it we seem agreed on that need.
      That written, I remain comfortably convinced with the denominational expression of understanding the testimony of the Scriptures about our current practice.

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