I am always seeking for ways to be used, to serve and to share. While giving is important, there are moments when we ourselves need to be filled. I find myself living a Martha-like lifestyle and wonder why it becomes difficult to love on my friends and family members or act with love and compassion toward a co-worker. If I can't love my brother who I can see, how can I say I love God, who I cannot see?
As I journal and keep track of my lifestyle habits, I am beginning to see a pattern. The less I invest in my spiritual well-being, the less-likely I am to deposit a Christ-like nature into others. While ministry is good, how can I expect to have enough to pour into others when I have not been deposited into?
That said, I have found many ways to be filled and refilled, and the biggest one I can attest to is rest. Being still has value. Jesus told Martha that Mary chose what was better when Mary decided to sit at the Master's feet and listen to him. When we pause and sit at the feet of our Lord, we are allowing Him to minister to us, to fill our love tanks and our spirit. It is here where we are able to take a step back from brewing on that topic that has been twisting in our minds and give our Lord a chance to speak to us. It is here where we can lay down our defense mechanisms, which are exhausting might I add, and let out our true selves. This should be a place of comfort and intimacy, like, shall I say, a marriage bed. That is, after all, where couples sleep and rest, and are, well, intimate. Intimacy also means exposure and vulnerability, and lets be honest, it's not always the most glamorous place; however rest has enormous qualities that improve one's health and productivity.
During one of the busiest seasons of the year, it's easy to get caught up in the grind and forget to rest. If you are finding yourself on empty, unable to pour into others, maybe it is because you are in need of rest. Truly, that was the foundation of the Sabbath day--rest. It should be something that is already ingrained in our weekly schedule, but like Martha, there is just so much that needs to get done, so much that screams for our attention; and of course, who else will get it done if we don't do it ourselves?
Valid thinking, but perhaps not the best choice. I've had to become more intentional about resting and "being still." It is no easy task, especially this week entering Christmas. There are endless things that need to get done and I'm feeling overwhelmed already, but I will find moments in my car, baking Christmas cookies, sitting at my desk at work to reflect on resting and making moments in my schedule for it.
When we rest, we stay still long enough to allow God to pour into us. The benefits of rest for our physical and mental state are scientifically proven to improve our overall health. We are able to reflect and renew.
As we enter a new year, there are many resolutions being made to "doing" things differently. Remember the importance of rest. It can truly be beneficial to your life in this new chapter.