Although I loved practicing emergency medicine, it never meshed well with the concept of rest. As a team, we doctors covered medical needs 24-7. I have had my adrenaline racing at 2:00 AM many nights; then would press on with administrative work during the day; rushing home for a few hours to sleep, just to start all over again. My genes are filled to the brim with German work ethic and my personality would be rated as "Type A". Rest continues to be an elusive goal much of the time.

We all have read much about the epidemic of sleep deprivation in our society. During sleep our bodies and our spirits are restored and rejuvenated to face a new day. In fact, it has been hypothesized that many of the disasters of our day such as the nuclear accident at Chernobyl, the near meltdown at Three Mile Island, and countless car accidents are partially caused by mistakes due to insufficient sleep. We need physical rest!

My grandfather once told me that our generation needed to "stop and rest the horses". As he worked in the fields, a time came for the horses to rest. He would sit under a tree and pray and listen to God, and perhaps snatch a nap. He worked hard, but knew how to rest. Our "revved up" society, at times, leads us to view rest as waste — just the opposite of God's purposes for rest.

Our spirits need rest as well. Our "spiritual immune system" is susceptible to sin without the quiet rest in Jesus along with physical rest. His invitation to rest is so inviting.

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28)

He speaks of it as a gift to be received. God's command for a Sabbath rest and to keep it holy reminds us that He knows what we need….rest…a time to listen to Him…..spiritual restoration.

By not resting, we reject great gifts and insights from God. We are less equipped to serve Him. I am the first to hold my hand high as one who needs to change. When we seek rest, I suppose we may find it to be the most productive activity of the day!


Sharing the journey with you,

Bob Snyder