These three words have been painted on the chalkboard in my kitchen since the beginning of the summer holidays. They are things that I find hard (read almost impossible) to do. I felt that this summer break was a good time to begin to try and embrace them a little more (I have a suspicion that it’s a lifelong journey!)
Today, I’m thinking about Rest.
I’m an active person. I’m generally tearing around with a zillion things to do. I do a lot of sport. I can be found in the swimming pool mostly and I feel guilty if I have not done some form of exercise in a day, whether that be a cycle to someplace or a full-on session, complete with fins and paddles, in the pool.
But in the last few years I have learnt to embrace a more genteel side to exercise, namely in the form of yoga and Pilates. My body copes much better with these forms of exercise. I have reluctantly hung up my running shoes as each time I try to run I get injured. “Finally…”, my body is saying, “…you are listening to me”!
I understand the concept in sport that we need to rest in order to build muscle and all that, but I’m not so great at actually doing it. I see rest as having to stop, be totally still, a ‘lie on the sofa and do nothing’ sort of thing. And I don’t like that idea.
I think I’m only seeing half the picture though.
I have thought about rest before. I love a good acronym and this one came to me and helped me to look at this whole idea afresh.
R – Rest is REJUVENATING. It allows recovery from energy already expended.
E – Rest is ENERGISING. It restores energy for what is next.
S – Rest is SANCTIFYING. For me, this means it allows me time to pray and chat to God in a place of quietness and peace. It’s good for me.
T – Rest takes TIME. I think this is possibly the hardest one for me. It takes time to rest and I’m always concerned I’m missing something or wasting time!
Restful activities? Are there such things? What defines rest for you? How do you incorporate it into your life?