We were on the way back home to Michigan from our trip to Disney World. It was rush hour and traffic on the expressway was practically at a standstill in Atlanta, Georgia. A rest area was not an option. We had to make due with what we had, which was a Kentucky Fried Chicken in downtown Atlanta, whose bathroom had a padlock and wasn't even in working order! Fortunately, God bless her, the woman at the counter let us in and allowed us to use the toilet, although flushing was impossible.
Now, every car trip inevitably contains some reference to the KFC experience and how we need to take a jar along for Lyndsey. But it's true: when you have to go, you have to go! Stopping off to find a bathroom was a must! We had to prevent an "accident", especially in an enclosed vehicle in which we would be stuck in for the next eighteen hours!
In the same way, finding time to rest in Christ is an absolute necessity for every Christian. And sometimes we have to take what we can get , even if it means opening our Bibles during those times when five minutes is all we can muster up. If we don't rest, "accidents" are bound to happen.
I'll never forget the time when my mom and I were driving home from a holiday shopping trip in Chicago (IKEA - woo-hoo!). It was late at night and since I didn't quite trust myself to drive my step-dad's pride and joy suburban, my mom did all the driving. Well, as a nurse, she works crazy shifts and it was catching up with her. That night she was extremely tired. I did everything I could to keep her awake. I rolled down the windows to let in some fresh, chilly air. I turned up the volume on the radio. I made her laugh by slouching down in my seat and pretending to pick my nose (private joke - I know, we have a strange, twisted sense of humor). But when our speed slowed to about forty miles per hour and the suburban started jerking off the road, we knew it was time to stop (duh!) before we ended up in the ditch. We pulled off at a gas station to stretch our legs, grab a coffee and something to snack on. Like the other attempts, this worked to keep her alert for a while but it wasn't long before her eyes were closing again.
Eventually, when we were about three miles from home, mom did end up pulling off so I could drive. But, like going to the bathroom, when you need sleep, you need sleep! She couldn't go on anymore.
How often do we try to get by on no rest? We overbook ourselves. We fill our schedules with activities and meetings, playdates, even church events. We sign our kids up for everything under the sun and wonder why they're cranky and irritable. We try to get by on as little sleep as possible and figure we'll catch up later. But later never comes and before we know it, we're burned out! Whatever happened to the lazy days of summer and relaxing in front of the fire on a cold winter's night?
Like my mom, we try to avoid the warning signs and press on. We do everything we can to "wake up", except the one thing we desperately need, and the only thing that truly works! Rest! Whether it's sleep for our physical bodies or spending time in God's Word for our spirits, we need rest! When we don't get the rest we need, our reflexes get slower, our vision less clear, our hands get shaky, and our thinking gets cloudy! A sure recipe for disaster!
Time with God, meditating on His Word, is vital for maintaining a place of "rest." I can't wait to get to heaven and discover how many disasters I avoided because I was rested up! (Of course, I don't want to know how many I could have avoided if I WAS rested up!)
To sum it up and give you something to chew on, I leave you with this thought:
To prevent "accidents" in your life, look for a rest stop every day - even if it's disguised as a KFC.
"Then Jesus said, 'Let's get away from the crowds for a while and rest.'" Mark 6:31
A great reminder of taking time out for our Lord. He gives us strength to carry on and provides us protection from those times we forget to rest in Him. I love your writing style and you're lessons always seem to find a home in my heart! Yours in Christ, ladybug Karen
Lynda... thanks for the KFC... that little pick-me-up. I must admit that I don't rest nearly enough. Sad too, because I'm home most all the time. I'm one that you can be sure will take heed to what I just read. In fact, I've got a couple more things to read and then I'm gonna do something I seldom ever do... nap!