The hot, humid summer days are upon us, county fairs are getting into full swing, and parents are heading to the stores to buy back-to-school supplies … all reminders to us that summer is winding down!
A friend and I were discussing this recently and maybe you’ve noticed it too … it’s a change that has been taking place over recent years. The change is that summer time is now a hectic time instead of a relaxing time.
It used to be that ‘summer’ was a time when our schedules slowed down, relaxing evenings were spent on the front porch, and the big event for the summer was Vacation Bible School (for 2 weeks!!).
But, not anymore … summer means getting an extra job, working overtime, shipping our kids off to various camps (cheerleading, soccer, baseball, football, scouts, etc.). Our families are going a hundred different directions and it seems that all we do is RUSH! RUSH! RUSH! When summer is over and school resumes … exhaustedly we sigh - “We need to rest!”
In the busyness of life we need periods of rest and reflection. So, just where do we find this place of rest? A weekend in the Smoky Mountains? A day at the spa? In the New Testament book of Matthew 11:28 we get a clue from Jesus… “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.”
In this passage from Matthew, the word ‘rest’ comes from the Greek word ‘anapauo’ - - which means ‘calm, comfort, and refreshment’. Doesn’t that sound wonderful right now?
If your life is fast-paced and you find that you are constantly rushing around - what a blessing to have access to ‘rest’! Calm, comfort and refreshment (a place to rest) is always only a prayer away.
Praying keeps us calm - like the stillness in the eye of a storm.
Praying comforts us - reminding us of God’s goodness and His availability to us.
Praying refreshes us - giving us renewed energy and strength.
So, as you enter these final days of summer … take time to REST!
Remember these words of an old familiar hymn…
“There is a place of quiet rest … near to the heart of God.
A place where sin cannot molest … near to the heart of God.
Oh Jesus, blessed Redeemer, sent from the heart of God,
Hold us who wait before Thee … near to the heart of God.
Dennis Wheeler is a volunteer citizen columnist, who serves The Daily Advocate readers weekly with his weekly column The Focus. Viewpoints expressed in these opinion pieces are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.