NEW – an hour ago
JACKSON, Miss. (BP) – "Jesus took a nap."
That is a message on a shirt worn by a senior adult at a meeting in one of our churches. Very pointed, so provoking, very simple – and very true.
Jesus, who is fully robbed of God, experiences the resources that we all experience from time to time. We are tired and need rest, healing and recovery.
In Matthew 8:24, we find Jesus with his disciples on a boat to cross to the other side of the sea, and there are these poignant words: "And behold, there arose a great storm in the sea, so that the ship was covered by waves: but he fell asleep. "
"He" is Jesus.
It's been a busy day and is undoubtedly heavy. Jesus found a place to rest and refuel and was ready to go again. What lessons can we all learn.
Not just physical exhaustion, but we can be drained emotionally, mentally, spiritually. Sometimes, maybe sitting in a meeting, or talking to someone on the telephone, or hearing a crisis in someone's life, suddenly you are drawn to a moment that can drain you – a moment that you can't prepare, for a moment you can't imagine happening. While God knows what's on the horizon, you don't know what will happen, and it takes everything from you and you need to close. Just remember, Jesus took a nap. I am not at all saying that we have to drag our lives into nothing and fall asleep all the time, but we certainly need to listen to God when He speaks to us and follows His example.
Think about it when you hear Jesus' words in Matthew 14:13 and 23. Verse 13 says that He departed by boat to a remote place, and then in verse 23 when He sent the crowds away, He went up to the mountain besides. Many argue that if we do not come apart for a refreshing time, prayer time, time to think clearly – if we are not scattered – we will separate.
It's interesting how we imagine that if we really walk with God, we are super humans and super women and never need time for rest and reflection. We place such auras around people who are in leadership positions or church services and think they have to give more and forever until there is nothing left, and sometimes they do.
I often think of the woman who came to see the pastor only to be told by her secretary that it was her day off. The woman who stopped by was rather disturbed. Then he met the pastor about his day off and said to him, "Satan does not take a day off." The pastor politely and gently said, "And that is why he is a devil."
The Bible is clear in helping us understand that each of us lives in a world of limitations, where our mental abilities may not be as broad as they need, or we are only emotionally or physically empty and cannot give more sensitivity and attention.
It is not wise for us to run out of time. If you try it in your car, at the end of the road when you start climbing a little slope, maybe you will swoop a few times and you will find yourself sitting on the edge of the road wondering what to do.
That can happen to us personally. So today, you don't need to take a day off but find daylight hours when you can separate, rest, reflect, and be renewed and face the rest of the day.