Self Care 

Published 1:03 pm Monday, January 15, 2024

The six days of creation are capped off with God resting on the seventh day. After a week of establishing foundations, setting laws in order, forming sea creatures, land animals and flying beings, the Lord God Jehovah ceased from His work to rest.

In the Ten Commandments we read God’s instruction to keep the Sabbath day. Further research in the first testament reveals how the people were not to do any work on this day. No labor, no plowing, no gathering wood; nothing. The seventh or Sabbath Day had a specific purpose: rest. Even during the 40 years God made manna appear on the ground for the Children of Israel as they traveled from Egypt to the Promise Land, God did not provide manna on the Sabbath. He instructed the Hebrews to gather enough manna on the 6th day for both the 6th and 7th day. God was serious about people resting on the Sabbath.  

Jesus sent the 12 disciples out for ministry. They were to cast out evil spirits, anoint the sick and heal them taking nothing with them except their staff. At the conclusion of the ministry time, the disciples returned to Jesus and gave a testimony of the wonderful things they had experienced and taught. Jesus then said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a secluded place and rest for a while.” Mark recorded after the words of Jesus how they were so many people coming and going, the disciples did not even have time to eat. A rather busy and exhausting time. 

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In the Gospel of John, Jesus made His way to a city called Sychar. This was a town in Samaria near the parcel of land Jacob gave to his son Joseph. John tells us Jesus sat down at Jacob’s well “being wearied from His journey.” Jesus experienced tiring to the point He needed to rest. 

Today, we live a very fast paced, nonstop, run, run, run life without giving much consideration to self-care. This is not a healthy way to live. We must factor and schedule times into our busy lives for rest. Our bodies need time to recoup, the mind deserves downtime, and the soul requires a recharge. 

I have heard spiritual leaders comment how sometimes the most spiritual thing a person can do is rest. There is some truth to this as each of us needs rest. Rest is not only sleep. Rest is turning the mind off from the job, responsibilities, tasks that need to be done, demands of people, and the pull of life. Resting can be taking a walk, reading a book, or riding your horse on the trails. Self-care can improve the quality of our lives and enable us to be more effective and efficient. Don’t underestimate the power of resting and self-care. Take some time and ask yourself if you are taking the appropriate amount of time to care for you. If not, let me encourage you to make changes. Otherwise, you may hit a place where you are forced to do so.