By Sanjie Jackson
I was sitting in the waiting room at my doctor’s office reading a contract while waiting to be called. I had been sick for two weeks straight. While I didn’t feel sick anymore, my lymph nodes were enlarged and they became so painful that it was hard to walk at times. All kinds of thoughts raced through my mind… What’s wrong with me? Why is this lingering? Do I have cancer?
At that moment, my phone rang. It was work. Again. That’s when I realized how I got here… I STAY TOO BUSY.
A few weeks ago, I was in Haiti doing dental missions (a calling that is near to my heart). When I returned from the trip, I went right back to work. Then, soon after that it was my birthday, which was fun- filled with family and friends. All these things were awesome, but the problem is that in between all these activities, as well as staying involved at church, planning my family reunion and managing two dental practices, I made no time for rest. At some point I need to learn to say “No” to a few things. I need to put less on my plate.
What happens when we don’t get enough rest? Our bodies don’t work optimally. Our immune system becomes compromised and we become more susceptible to disease. Also, our brain function diminishes. Lack of rest disrupts the neural pathways that allow information to travel smoothly from one area of our brain to another. And, eventually we can crash.
That is what was happening to me! My body was crashing and trying to tell me to REST. The great thing about being a child of God is that I can rest in Him. I don’t have to look far at all.
Psalms 23:2-3 says, “He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me besides the still waters. He restores my soul: He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.”
This is my new favorite scripture because it LITERALLY tells me what I need to do. I interpret it as God telling me to lie down AND REST. I will choose the still water, which I call the beach. And when I rest HE will restore me. HE will recharge me. And once I allow Him to fully charge me, then I can actually hear Him and I can fearlessly follow where He leads me.
Psalm 62: 1-2 says “My Soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.” Part of my rest is reworking my daily schedule to spend quality time with God. When I set aside time to have my devotions, my heart and mind is at peace.
So, as I begin to move forward, I am working on limiting my weekly obligations so I’m not too tired to spend time with God. Next, I’m learning to say NO which is hard for me. I will choose to rest, I can’t do everything that I’m asked.Learning to prioritize is not going to be easy but it certainly is essential to getting rest.
So, What about you? When was the last time you took time to rest?