Finding time to time out is more important than most creative souls realize.
Because our work and play are often intertwined – our art and life so connected – it can be difficult to switch off.
I’m often awake before the world stirs, enjoying few moments of silence. Well, as silent as it can be – I have mild tinnitus so even my silence is accompanied by a pitched ringing in my ears.
Ringing or not. I’m thankful for the quiet.
Moments like these should be treasured not pressured. How often do we try and crowd every waking breath with productive activity? Feel guilty because we are not doing something?
I speak of we because most of us are like the rest of us.
Creative entrepreneurs find it difficult to switch off.
Some heinous lie has convinced us that we should be on all the time. That inactivity is unproductive. That massive action, burning the candle, and hustle are compulsory rites of passage.
Rest and relaxation is not unproductive. It is the unseen root system that nourishes our productivity.
Rest is something our Father has woven into the fabric of human life right from the beginning. After the most humongous creative outburst in all of history, flinging planets into orbit and the like, God rested to enjoy all He had made.
“And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day. Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.” (Genesis 1:31-2:3)
Rest = appreciation.
When was the last time you stopped to appreciate your accomplishments? To celebrate your victories, however small or large?
Every day, in the cool of the day when the heat was over, you would find Papa walking in the garden, taking time with his friends and family.
“And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day…” Genesis 3:8
I can only begin to imagine the wonderful conversations that may have exchanged in those warm shaded hours.
Rest = relationships.
Have you enjoyed the refreshment of friends? Put work aside and engaged in childlike frivolity today? Has the rich exchange of hearts with your spouse brought sustenance to your soul?
Such things are not written on paychecks and page views. They are priceless.
One of my favourite places to pitch my tent in the Bible is Hebrews chapter 4.
It is a chapter about rest. Not enforced, but invited.
The chapter talks about a rest that remains for the people of God.
“There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.” Hebrews 4:9
Here’s a promise and invitation to cease from craving, proving, running, and reaching; our half-written novel, our budding blog, and musical manuscript. All of them can wait. Time to switch off the camera, close the laptop, stop scrolling social, and rest.
Step for a moment from our own incomplete arrangements into Papa’s finished symphony. To drink in the goodness unhindered by anxiety.
Delight in the moment, knowing completion. Knowing that sometimes the destination is the journey itself!
“God keeps renewing the promise and setting the date as today…the original invitation…” Hebrews 4:7 THE MESSAGE
Rest = knowing the significance of now.
Don’t allow tomorrow’s hopes to steal today’s joys.
“To day if ye will hear his voice…” Hebrews 4:7
Take time to switch off. Recharge. Refresh. Renew. To listen.
Take time to recognise that in all our giving out we sometimes need to give in, give up, give over and let grace go to work on our behalf…
“For from of old no one has heard nor perceived by the ear, nor has the eye seen a God besides You, Who works and shows Himself active on behalf of him who [earnestly] waits for Him.” Isaiah 64:4 AMPLIFIED
You are important. Don’t forget to join your Father in the cool moments of the day for His love to pour in.
If you do, I promise you will have more to pour out than you ever thought possible.