The holidays are here, and everyone’s looking forward to a well-earned break. But what does the Bible say about rest? And how should we think about rest when all we seem to be doing is getting busier and busier?
Here are five things the Bible says about rest:
- Work and rest is part of the natural rhythm of God’s world. Cycles of day and night are part of the creation pattern, and so is one day in seven for rest. We should be careful of being out-of-time with the pattern God has wisely given. (see Genesis 1:3-5; Genesis 2:1-3; Mark 4:26-27).
- Rest is about enjoying not indulging. When God rested on the seventh day, he gave us a pattern for how we rest too. He enjoyed what he had created. Similarly, we can rest and be refreshed through the enjoyment of what the Lord has created. Whether it’s sleep, walking on a beautiful beach, exercising our bodies, or just some peace and quiet, we should enjoy it for what it is, remember who made it, and give him thanks for making it for us to enjoy. (see Genesis 2:1-3; 1 Timothy 4:4; James 1:17)
- We can rest because the Lord never rests. God doesn’t need to sleep or rest. He’s eternally awake. That means we can rest knowing that even while we’re asleep or resting, the Lord still has everything perfectly under control. (see Psalm 4:8; Psalm 121:3-4; Isaiah 40:28)
- Even Jesus needed to rest. In his human state, he experienced what is completely natural for every other human being – the need for sleep and rest. We shouldn’t ever expect to outlast Jesus! (see Mark 4:38; John 4:6; Hebrews 4:14-16)
- Rest is our ultimate destination. All rest in this life will be temporary, and may even elude us. The encouragement is that the rest God gives us now is only a shadow of rest forever, to enjoy God forever (see Isaiah 40:30-31:Matthew 11:28-29; Hebrews 4:8-10).
Enjoy the break!