By: Jana Greene
Why is it that I struggle with resting? I feel like I must be doing something at all times. I tire, but feel guilty for doing nothing, because there is always something to do.
To work on.
It is Sunday, the Day of Rest, but before I get out of bed, I am already formulating plans. With my husband home with me on Sundays, I want him to see how busy I am, how efficient. I could clean the closet out, write an outline for a book I am working on, wash the rugs, bathe the dog, do fifty sit-ups, work on the family budget, vacuum the cat hair off the bedroom floor.
I am already exhausted, just from the formulating a plan.
While I am still thinking about the endless bounty of cat fur, one of our cats walks into the bedroom. He is grumpy from the long journey (the garage across the hall) to get to his food in the master bathroom. He hadn’t eaten in at least an hour….
”How do you people expect me to survive?” he seems to be saying, “I should call the SPCA!”
Although he has done absolutely nothing all day long but eat, sleep and poop, he only makes it halfway through the room, collapsing in high-drama. He rolls upside down with all four legs in the air so that I should be able see his ribs. Except that nobody has ever seen his ribs. At 21 pounds, we aren’t sure that this of fat, ill-tempered feline even has bones. And then he takes an impromptu nap.
He had to stop and rest. And he doesn’t feel guilty at all…he knows that he will eat, sleep and poop another day.
The Bible says in Hebrews 4:4 (Message): “If we believe, though, we’ll experience that state of resting. But not if we don’t have faith. “
It takes faith to enjoy a state of resting?
I sometimes wonder if work and rest is akin to faith and deeds, in that you can’t have one without the other. Good deeds without faith is empty, work without rest counterproductive.
In the lost art form of doing nothing, great ideas are conceived; in rest, energy is stored up for the work of birthing of those ideas. I must have faith that the world will go on without my constant, busy choreographing in order to take the rest I don’t feel guilty for taking.
Somehow, it does go on.
There will always be things to do.
To work on.
But, it’s Sunday, that day of rest, and so I don’t get out of bed right away. Laying back against my pillows, I try un-formulating my plans.
Today, I most likely will not impress my husband with a whirlwind of activity. My husband doesn’t expect me to be efficiently busy; he loves me just the way I am. I won’t clean the closet out, write an (entire) outline for the book, wash all of the rugs or bathe the dog. I can almost guarantee that sit-ups will not be a part of this day (as they are not a part of any other), nor will working on bills or vacuuming up the cat hair.
But I will feed the cat. He has work to do, you know.
Reminding me to have the faith to rest.