The fourth commandment, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy”, like all commandments was for our benefit. Jesus said, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” The idea of a six-day workweek was foreign in ancient times. In fact, the Greeks thought Jews were lazy because in their mind, the Jews took a holiday every 7th day.
I believe this commandment not only protects our physical need for rest, but it also guards and protects our legitimate motivational need for peace of mind that comes from being at rest.
We all need a break from the pressure…
We all need to take a mental break, an emotional vacation where we can leave our cares behind for at least a little while. Many of you are in commission sales or own your own business, where you sometimes feel incredible pressure to make a sale or not have a paycheck. I entered that world in September of 1975 and have been there ever since.
One way I coped with the pressure was to walk and talk with the Father beside a meandering river. For a half hour or so I would ponder God’s Word, tell him my dreams and cast any cares I had on Him. This break became my secret weapon.
For 30 minutes I was on vacation. I skipped rocks across the placid, slow moving river. I imagined what it would have looked like a hundred, even a thousand years ago. I took a break from the stress.
Thirty minutes later, I was mentally refreshed and spiritually charged, ready to take on the challenges of the day. Try it yourself. Take a mini-sabbatical right in the middle of your day. Not only will you will feel rested, but you will get some peace of mind!
One of the most successful salesmen I knew in my early years was a source of consternation for his employer. He was the top salesman by a huge margin, yet worked less than anyone else in the company. When he was teaching me the ropes, he took me out on some calls. About half way through the day, he pulled over by the woods near a stream in the country. He changed out of his three piece suite into shorts and t-shirt, grabbed his fishing pole and offered me a spare change of clothes.
We hiked through the woods to one of his favorite fishing holes for a break right in the middle of the day. I thought I must be breaking the law or something. How could it be ok to do this during the working day? What if the boss found out? Truth is, he didn’t hide it from the boss and the boss let it slide because of this man’s incredible sales results.
That salesman, one of my early mentors, had found an important key to success. He worked from an inner position of rest. When that rest was depleted, he refilled, much like you would your gas tank. Apparently, he was quite the gas guzzler because he started work late, took lots of breaks, finished early and had other interests such as church, a recording studio and was elected to the school board.
If you are lacking the place of rest in your soul…
… don’t miss your Sabbath break on the weekend. It’s God’s gift to you! But also consider giving yourself mini-Sabbaticals during the day or week, whenever you find your soul is depleted of rest. When you work from a position of rest, you are working from a position of strength… And that is a huge advantage!
Tomorrow I will share with you how to help your prospects gain this peace of mind in their business dealings with you.
Until then, be fruitful and multiply!
Wise words, Michael.
We have to discipline ourselves to remain in the rest that the Lord has provided for us.
It’s amazing to me how HARD it is at times, to simply… REST. Judy, I think you know that about me, better than anyone. (o-:
Hello, Michael and Judy…
You are right both of you…and a timely reminder to me!…that yep, we could take advantage of those mini-sabbaticals in between harried activities of the day while it is not possible to schedule longer ones in meantime.
Your article above has even more made me embraced my belief that what is truer in life is that there is this rhythm or a dance between action and contemplation rather than a balance between work and rest. The account of Mary and Martha in the gospel is a practical example of that rhythm between a contemplative posture with the Infinity and an active motion for Him…;-)
Thanks for pointing this out again; I would be more conscious in taking advantage of this God-given life rhythm!
Interesting thoughts Benjie. I so appreciate your input on this blog over the years. You have much to offer my friend!
Thank you for that awesome article,for the last couple of months God has been revealing to me His plan in my life regarding physical and mental rest.
Good for you for paying attention to God’s plan and ways. You will need a rested body and unentangled mind in the days ahead.
Thank you Michael. After reading that, it made me realize how little rest I get. I am going to make a point to slow down some to enjoy God’s creation and spend more time resting. I always feel like I have something else to do or get done.
Getting to the place of rest can be a real struggle. You’ve got to LABOR to ENTER THE REST. Go for it my friend!
What a timely article. As we are gearing up for a very busy season in our lives, this principle is huge. Thank you for sharing. We are so enjoying learning from you. May the Lord continue to bless your teachings!
Thank you Team Southerland. God’s richest blessings on you this coming season!
How can I subscribe?