Catch Your Breath

rest

Editor’s note: It’s another Sit & Listen Saturday with Devotionals Daily. We hope you enjoy reading as well as listening to this version of today’s devotion from Max Lucado excerpted from his book, Less Fret, More Faith. You can also listen on your Alexa device by prompting, “Alexa, ask Devotionals to read today’s devotion.”

Time for rest must be taken daily and weekly. God told Moses,

Six days do your work, but on the seventh day do not work, so that your ox and your donkey may rest, and so that the slave born in your household and the foreigner living among you may be refreshed. — Exodus 23:12 NIV

This was not a suggestion, recommendation, or piece of practical advice. This was a command. Rest! Once a week let the system reboot. Once a week let the entire household slow down. The Israelite who violated this law paid for the sin with his or her life. Today the death penalty is still in effect, but the death is a gradual one that comes from overwork, stress, and anxiety.

The Bible does not see rest as a sign of weakness or laziness but as a mark of reverence.

To observe a Sabbath day of rest is to announce, “God knows what I need more than I do. If He says to rest, I will rest.” And, as we do, our bodies and minds will be refreshed.

Never has rest been more important. We move at too fast a pace! Our adrenaline spigot is seldom shut off. As we race for late-night flights and add early-morning meetings, we are stretched beyond our limits. High adrenaline output depletes the brain’s natural tranquilizers and sets the stage for high anxiety. Many of us have been trained to associate relaxation with irresponsibility, so some rewiring is needed.

Try this:

  • Don’t overdo it. Understand your limits. If you think you have no limits, then you have more than most people.
  • Once you have reached your limits, stop. 
Don’t work until you drop. Find a pace of life that works for you, and stick to it.
  • Maintain regular breaks during the day. 
Naps are biblical.
  • Give your mind a rest from technology. 
Turn off, unplug, detach from social media, news, and all the tech toys that deplete energy.
  • Learn to relax. To relax is to disengage and let go. An hour or daylong Sabbath is not the time to catch up with your work. It is a time to entrust your work to God. After all, He worked for six days and then rested. The world didn’t fall apart. It won’t for you either.

Verse for Reflection

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. — Matthew 11:28-30

Pray It Through

Lord,
 Break me of the need to be busy pursuing a sense of self-worth. Make me secure in who you are and who you have made me to be, and as a result, teach me what it means to truly rest. In your holy name, amen.

Excerpted with permission from Less Fret, More Faith by Max Lucado, copyright Max Lucado.

* * *

Your Turn

Are you way too busy? Overworked? Over-stressed? Burdened and exhausted? Well, here’s another question: are you resting? Catch your breath with Jesus! Take the Sabbath rest seriously and see what God does in your heart and health! Come share your thoughts with us on our blog. We want to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily

Less Fret, More Faith

Less Fret, More Faith
Max Lucado
Normal Price: $2.99
FaithGateway Price: $1.79
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Anxious for Nothing

Anxious for Nothing
Max Lucado
Normal Price: $22.99
FaithGateway Price: $13.79
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Max Lucado

More than 100 million readers have found comfort in the writings of Max Lucado. He ministers at the Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, Texas, where he lives with his wife, Denalyn, and a sweet but misbehaving mutt, Andy.

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