In my life are two amazing, playful, full of energy little boys. They wake up at 7:00am and are 100 miles per hour right out of the gate. One of my kids even runs laps around the house once his eyes are fully opened and his waking yawns cease. Sometimes I just sit back in amazement during the day and wonder where in the world they get all of their energy. They wake up so focused, determined, and unstoppable at times. The problem is, if I let my kids act like this all of the time they reach major burn out and sometimes even become ill because of the fast pace they have created.
As a mom it is vital to my children and their health that I make sure they get all of the rest that they need with all of the energy they use up in a day. Whether that comes in the form of having them sit down with their favorite books, watching a movie, taking a nap, or an early bedtime...it is my responsibility as a parent. Even if I feel like the worst mom ever or like I am literally fighting two tigers to get them to rest...it's a must. In the process of chasing God and chasing my new found dream of finishing my first book the Lord reminded me, sometimes gently and sometimes harshly, that I am just like my children...I do not rest easily. Yes, at bedtime, when all is said and done, I am out like a light. But during the day I can act like a chicken with its head cut off. I get so wrapped up in all that has to be done that I am terrible at "stopping to smell the coffee."
There were times that I would wake up early to write, do all of my duties I have a mom and a wife during the day, wait till everyone went to bed, and then stayed up late to write more. I just "HAD TO GET IT DONE!" However, I learned through some major falls to the face that I needed to add rest into my every day or burnout was going to creep in. Burnout is not good for ANY dream or any person for that matter. I have personally reached the burnout in my life and it wasn't pretty.
Thankfully, in the process of writing, the Lord would pull me back before these major burnouts occurred. I am so thankful for His grace! He really has taught me to relax, enjoy my family, laugh, and make time for FUN TIMES! I learned that it is OK if my house isn't spotless all of the time. I learned that it is OK if I didn't wake up to write one morning. I learned that it is OK if I put my dream down to spend time with my family! I learned that it is OK if I take a nap. The key to reaching dreams is to have balance and part of that balance is rest.
In the first seven days of creation at the end of it all, God rested (Genesis 2:2). If God rested then why do we act as if we are a step above God ourselves and do not need rest. We pretend like "we got this" and we can do everything all the time, with out taking a break. If you feel as if you "got this" and do not need to rest, then you have been fooled by the enemy my friend. If the Creator of the entire universe needs rest, then everyone including you needs rest! You need to laugh, you need to take out an adult coloring book and color, you need to play with your kids (if you have any), enjoy other family and friends that God has placed in your life, and maybe even watch the sun go down.
Now, I am not saying it is always easy to take a step back and rest. I still struggle with this idea from time to time. BUT God gave us the gift of rest and we need to stop taking it for granted so much! There is so much danger in taking it for granted all of the time. When we do not use the gift of rest that He has given us we can make ourselves physically ill and even worse that that, we teach our children—the younger generation, how not to act. We teach them that we can handle everything on our own and that we do not need God to accomplish our dreams. When we teach them that we are setting them up for failure because we need God for EVERYTHING in our lives...especially our dreams. So, if you have found yourself running 100 miles per hour, take a step back, take a deep breath, and REST! God telling you, "Rest sweet child of mine...REST!"
Genesis 2: 2, "By the seventh day God completed His work that He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work that He had done."
Matthew 11: 28, “"Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”