Day 17: We Need To Rest
I am sick. I have 101.6 fever, stuffy nose, slight cough, aches, and chills. Life. It happens when we do not want it to. I am finishing my last writing class of my college career. I am behind on book reviews. I am almost done with a FREE devotional I am writing for y’all. I have three articles and three poems that are due at the end of the month. I feel behind, but my body says rest. I find myself in this cycle where I get sick but I have to hustle and then I get sick again, because I do not rest. Everything is important to me and needs to get done. I feel guilty when I need to rest.
I am about to preach to myself and hopefully it encourages you.
Here is the thing, we are going to get sick and no matter if we are sick or not our bodies and minds need rest. We cannot run on full steam all the time or we will burn out. We were never meant to run on all cylinders without pit stops for tune-ups and strengthening. When we are burned out, disappointed, and tired we need to rest. Self-care is a buzz term right now, but we need it. We need to care for our bodies, minds, and souls. That does not mean we treat ourselves every day and fuel up on consumerism and selfishness, but use what we have access to and know to recharge.
Here are some examples of my favorite self-care to-do’s
- Silence. Phone off. Computer off. T.V. off. Every screen in my life off. I spend most of my day, if not all of my day plugged in. It is bad for my mind and my eyes. No screens.
- Sleep. The bare minimum in self-care is actually sleeping. Getting in bed by 9:30 is the best thing. I can stay up late, but then I wake up cranky. Sleep is the best medicine and naps are gems from Jesus.
- Jesus. Speaking of Jesus, spending extended time in my Bible and journal makes life and my mind sweeter. I need Him.
- Baths. Not everyone likes a bath, but they are a sweet treat for me. I do not always take them, but when I do, I do it right. Bubble bath/bath bomb, a good book, and maybe a favorite candle. It is the best time to just be.
- Journal. Writing out my thoughts and prayers helps me reconnect with what I am actually feeling. In the noise of my mind and world, it is so easy for me to stop thinking and just go no auto pilot with zero control over my mind. Journaling brings me back in.
- Getting in Nature. Taking a walk in the fresh air with a worship soundtrack or encouraging podcast is another way I unwind. Plus I get my vitamin D and a workout in, score.
- Exercise. Last put not least. Getting sweaty helps me think clearer and feel good. The physical benefits are great, but what happens in my heart and mind when I take care of my body is the best reward. I build up my strength of body and am amazed at how God sustains me through every hard mile.
None of these things are new or even that original, but they help me care for this vessel that is my life. I need to do these more, God did not make me or any of us to run on fumes. We need to take care of the body, mind, and spirit we have been given to be able to face our responsibilities and dreams with all we have to give. We can do all things with Christ, but I do not think he wants us to do everything at once without stopping.
With Christ we can do all things, including taking the time to rest and enjoy, learn, and listen to him in our dreams and lives.