Learning To Rest Well

Leaders are, by nature, driven. It is that same asset that can become a potential liability.

“The reality of Sabbath, of taking a rest, is a gift from God to all people, not just leaders. The Sabbath, Swoboda contends later on in the book, is for plants, animals, land, poor, rich, Christian, atheist—literally all of creation needs Sabbath because God wrote Sabbath into the fabric of creation prior to the Fall.”

 

Leaders are, by nature, driven. It is that same asset that can become a potential liability.

The pace of the world we live in is 24/7 with a ceaseless pursuit of productivity, effectiveness and efficiency. These three (productivity, effectiveness, efficiency) are not bad things—they can be very positive! But, when they are pursued in an unhealthy manner, they can lead to a destructive way of life.

This book, Subversive Sabbath: The Surprising Power of Rest in a Nonstop Worldis a textbook on healthy living in the midst of an unhealthy lifestyle promoted by much of culture. A.J. Swoboda, the author, writes, “In a world of doing, going, and producing, we have no use for a gift that invites us to stop.”

The reality of Sabbath, of taking a rest, is a gift from God to all people, not just leaders. The Sabbath, Swoboda contends later on in the book, is for plants, animals, land, poor, rich, Christian, atheist—literally all of creation needs Sabbath because God wrote Sabbath into the fabric of creation prior to the Fall.

I think most of us have a general idea of what Sabbath is. Swoboda writes, “Sabbath is that ancient idea and practice of intentional rest… Sabbath is not new. Sabbath is just new to us.”

I could probably count on one, maybe two hands the number of times I’ve heard a teaching, sermon, podcast, read a blog or book or article, regarding the idea of Sabbath keeping. It is a rare conversation because not keeping the Sabbath is usually rewarded with perks and higher pay, while at the same time, not keeping the Sabbath brings about heavy consequences such as damaging our bodies, minds, and relationships with family and friends.

Here is a truth-seeking question: When is the last time you’ve intentionally rested from work, productivity and even entertainment? This means putting the phone away, not binging on Netflix, not checking e-mail on your “day off,” and that sort of thing.

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