How we can create a peaceful atmosphere when life keeps speeding up.
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly
in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
Matthew 11:28-30 NKJV
It’s December, and we are in the middle of the holiday season hustle and bustle. I don’t need to tell you that it’s also the season where our calendars are notoriously overbooked, our wallets overstretched, and our hearts – dare I say?
It is in this season that I lean heavily on the daily discipline of my quiet time in the morning. My first minutes, spent in vertical dialogue with God, are laced in quiet surrender, where I hope to set my mind for the day.
But if I’m being honest?
Sometimes, even carving out those little, white space minutes of margin at the top of my day…well, it isn’t enough.
A few hours of nightly rest, followed by a string of well-intentioned, quiet morning minutes, are simply not enough to carry me through all that the day is packing.
Perhaps you can relate?
A quick look at the interior maps of our hearts will surely trace over the unique miles marched and tender tissue trials that we have all been forced to face ever since the word pandemic took a place in our everyday vocabulary.
The reality is that it has taken more than the usual to carry our physical bodies with a forward-paced faith through each season.
Let alone each day…and now, into the holiday.
More patience, more resilience, more perseverance, more trust, more hope, more love than before.
What I’ve found is that all of that more…also requires more rest.
Longing For Rest
Maybe you feel the deep longing for rest from this extended journey too?
And now…in this holiday season that is baked in the batter of get up, hurry up, show up, it’s no wonder we find ourselves feeling a little sideways.
Lost even, in the seasonal scramble of squeeze speed to get it all in, before it’s over.
Oh, friend, it is okay to zoom in on a feeling for a minute or more, linger when you need to, and even…stop to simply catch your breath.
In His Word
“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23 ESV
We can either keep chasing the wind of the wild west world, filled with noisy rounds shot into the air of “hurry up and faster now!”
We can bravely take out our creased, tear-stained interior map that traces over our every trial and lay it down before our God.
Receive the exquisite exchange of His never-ending mercies sent to saturate and soak the soil of our weary, worn-down souls.
Scripture reminds us that His mercies are new every morning.
Not old mercies.
Not some mornings.
New every morning.
Sweet friend, it’s time we take a breath and come up for air, and not just in the morning.
Taking a Rest Cue
Imagine your day as a sheet of lined, looseleaf piece of paper.
The white space margin along the top is what I think of as my quiet morning minutes spent in collaborative conversation with God.
I have a habit of taking the pen and filling the entire sheet, top to bottom, with all the things.
Leaving no white space, I tend to write a story that tucks me or collapses me into bed, all so that I can wake up and re-write the same script again tomorrow.
But what if?
What if in the middle of the working, eating, playing marathon…what if we lifted the pen, skipped a line, and came up for air?
What I’m learning is that we can take cues for rest even in the middle minutes of our day.
Accept a rest cue, invitation by the One who is the source of our deepest rest.
Somewhere along the way, we got tangled up, channeling our value straight from the connected cord of busy.
What we do and how much we do, especially during the holiday season, equals how valuable I am to the people around me.
Oh, how we have gotten it so wrong sometimes.
In Your Life
How might you seek and seize a rest-cue moment in the middle of your day?
Here are some ways I accept a rest-cue moment:
- A walk around the block after my daughters board the bus.
- A breath prayer in the parking lot before I head into the busy store.
- A minute or more stare out the window, watching the sparrows feast on the feeder.
- A short snuggle with our pup on the sunbeam dotted floor, in her favorite spot before I step over her.
Each a small choice to rest into the cues around me and quiet the noise that taunts me to hurry up, so I don’t “fall behind.“
When we seek and seize the cues and welcome a rhythm that may look low and slow to others…we are listening to the “learn from Me” invitation in our key verse.
Resting into the cues throughout our day for a soft pause is obedience in action.
Slowing down in a hurry-up world is not playing small or a sign of weakness; it is growing in grace and trust in the One in whom our real rescue can be found.
Even more…the choice to rest into the cues of calm creates an atmosphere of peace for those around us.
Skip a line, come up for air friend, because stillness with the Lord outruns the race of the world.
For more encouragement on how to accept cues for rest and invite quiet, calm moments into the middle of your day, read this post. We pray for you to be inspired on how writing the Word for five minutes a day can take you to a softer place. And if you’re feeling weary and worn down, you may find strength of heart in this post from Heather.
Visit Heather’s blog, “Notes for my Daughters,” to receive both tender encouragement for your heart and cozy inspiration for your home. You can also catch up with her on Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest for inspiration to empower you on your walk with God and inspire you with budget-friendly ways to love your home.