Daily Blog Email
This summer has been busier than I thought it would be. Work didn’t seem to get less busy like it has in past summers, and one of my summer classes was an independent study that involved more reading and writing than I’m used to doing in such a short period of time.
Also, we bought a house this spring, which was awesome. With a house has come all sorts of projects and, thankfully, many guests. We’ve hosted people in our home more weekends than not this summer, it seems. We love hosting people, but for an introvert like me, weekends are important for recharging, and that hasn’t really been possible.
On top of all of that, Susie and I have both had our own bouts with physical ailments this summer. My ailments, as I’ve concluded in the last week, are all really connected back to one root cause, as far as I can tell: stress.
Anxiety isn’t my issue. I don’t get very nervous about crowds, or meeting deadlines, or other such matters. I don’t live my life in active fear, really. So, I wouldn’t say “anxiety,” is my problem. That’s not it.
My problem is doing too much.
In any given week, I’m working my job, taking nine to 12 hours of master’s courses, doing contract work for a few different people, writing this blog, beginning my book, reading a lot, working out a couple of times a week (not enough), and trying to be a good husband that helps his wife around the house with various chores. I sleep, too, generally.
That might seem tame to you. If so, congratulations, you are more powerful than I.
This chaotic schedule combined with a constant stream of activity on the weekends this summer has basically led to my body forcing me to rest. Just the last week or so, I’ve been involuntarily clenching my jaw at night which has led to awful headaches in the morning, a sore jaw, ears that feel plugged up, and a general feeling of fatigue.
I’m not sick. I’m not anxious. I’ve just been doing too much.
Thankfully, this weekend I had some time to disconnect a little bit, read, and catch up on some much needed sleep.
As I rested this weekend, I took time to remind myself of what I am about to tell you:
I don’t actively live with the idea that my life will fall apart if I stop taking contract work or if I tone back my master’s coursework, but deep down I fear what life would be like if I took some stuff off my plate.
Laziness is a sin (see Proverbs, etc.), but resting is important. Physically, our bodies need rest to function, and spiritually, our souls need rest to rely on the Lord.
Taking time to rest is scary for a lot of people, myself included, because it forces us to trust that God is in control. But, it’s a good spiritual exercise to set aside time to rest and remember what the Lord has done and continues to do for you, while not doing anything yourself.
I’ve been really into some Rich Mullins lately. In one of his songs called, “We Are Not As Strong As We Think We Are,” he says, “We are frail; we are fearfully and wonderfully made.”
Indeed. We are frail, and we are fearfully and wonderfully made. So, rest.
Jesus has “fulfilled the Sabbath,” but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take one.