Editor’s Note: Caleb is a contributor to this blog, but isn’t the only writer whose words you may see here. To read more posts by Caleb or to see the other writers, visit the authors’ categories in the menu at the top right corner of the screen.
Resting, recharging and taking time for myself are all things I struggle with immensely. However, they are necessary for thriving in life.
I prefer to live by words like “don’t stop,” “keep going,” “push through it” and “it’s ok, I’m fine.”
I haven’t rested in who knows how long, and as I’m writing this, my body hurts and my mind feels fried. I just need to stop and sit with Jesus; I need to sit at His feet and not move for a very long time.
But where in the world am I supposed to find time to stop?
I’ve got to remind myself that life will go on, and there will always be that next thing that I need to accomplish. However, if I’m not careful I can get so focused on accomplishing tasks — even if they are positive tasks — that I forget to simply worship. We cannot afford to forget to worship Jesus.
I have a great desire for the Lord to use my life to make a significant impact on this world. I love the quote by missionary William Carey that says, “Expect great things; attempt great things.” I want to attempt and accomplish lots of great things for the name of Jesus. But if I’m honest with myself — at my best, I’m still a sinner that is hopeless on my own. If you couple that fact with living a life where I burn the candle at both ends, where I’m in a constant state of tiredness, then I know for sure that the outcome isn’t going to be anything great.
Even though I know these things to be true, in today’s culture, Christians and non-Christians alike keep telling us to keep going and push on.
But at what cost?
If we do keep pushing on through exhaustion and continue to allow ourselves to be overcommitted, we are headed down a road that can easily lead to a fiery crash.
According to the Guinness World Records, the longest anyone has consecutively juggled three objects is 12 hours and 5 minutes. I know this isn’t exactly the same as juggling life, but it should give us some perspective. We shouldn’t lie to ourselves. We can’t continually juggle everything because eventually we are going to drop something.
I know in my life, and for lots of college students, it is so easy to drop worship and our time we rest with Jesus, the One who gave His very life for us.
Jesus wants us to sit at His feet. Yes, He wants us to make disciples and go to the nations proclaiming His name, but He wants us to do so while we are closely connected to Him. He knows that if we live lives that constantly pour out and are constantly on-the-go we will eventually hit empty.
Pretend that you are driving your dream car; now picture driving your dream car without ever stopping to fill up for gas — it just won’t happen. Your dream car is useless without fuel and so are we. If we go and go, eventually we will end up stranded on the side of the road between one task in life and the next.
We are no good to anybody if we are stranded on the side of the road. We must take time to fill up.
It makes me think of the story of Mary and Martha — with Martha rushing around to do things to welcome Jesus in her home, while Mary simply sat at Jesus’ feet. Despite all of Martha’s work, Jesus was pleased with Mary because she just desired Jesus.
My prayer for myself is that I desire Jesus, and that I desire to be with Him above all else – not that I desire to do great things for Jesus. If I desire Him above everything and great things happen, then awesome, but if I do that and I don’t see the things happen on earth that I want to see that’s ok because when I’m gone from this earth I will get to see Jesus. Nothing is greater than that.
So I’m going to put some stuff on hold and worship my Creator. The time to rest has come.
Ready. Set. Rest.