Then Jesus said, “Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.” He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn’t even have time to eat. (Mark 6:31)
Preparations are in full swing here at our home. We will be celebrating Christmas a week early this year with our kids, their spouses, and my dad and brother. I have been trying to squeeze in the cookie baking, the house cleaning, and connecting with friends, along with the holiday shopping. I can get a little frantic and forget to take care of myself as I prepare, seeking to create a memorable family holiday experience. As my mind fills with the “to do” list, I often find I don’t sleep as well and can feel my energy begin to be sapped by the tasks and I lose the joy of what Christmas is truly about.
So, believe it or not, I have begun a new practice that is helping me to hit the re-set button. I began this practice simply because I was tired, but I am finding a new sense of awareness of Jesus as I take some time for rest. You may ask what is this new practice…well, I am taking a short 10 minute “nap” to refocus my thoughts. I grab a blanket, put on my cozy socks and curl up on the couch and just be in God’s presence for 10 minutes. I close my eyes and ask Him to fill me anew with Himself, to remind me of His love and of what is truly important for today.
It is amazing how this simple practice has altered my focus and my priorities. During this time God is opening my eyes to see Him anew. To see how He desires me to not be frantic, but to be purposeful. Purposeful to share His love in my home and with my family. He is graciously reminding me of the importance of refueling spiritually by resting in His presence, really resting and allowing His love to wash over me. He is teaching me He desires my presence and not my perfection.
I imagine some of you might be feeling the same way. Now I know a 10 minute nap is not be possible for everyone, but could you unplug for just 5-10 minutes in the middle of your day to refocus your thoughts and ask God to re-set your day? You could close your office door, or walk away from your desk, or if you’ve got children, rest when they rest. God will bless those few minutes together to fill you with a new sense of His love for you and His purposes for you today.
I know from experience even 5 minutes can change the entire focus of a day. God knows you need rest and spiritual refueling, especially during this hectic season. He sees your heart, He sees your need for replenishment that only He can provide, and He offers you a rest and peace that can only be found in His presence. I pray you take 5-10 minutes today to experience His love for you.
“For I will satisfy the weary soul, and every languishing soul I will replenish.” (Jer 31:25)