Day 4 - Taking Time To Rest
If you’re feeling empty and tired, there’s probably a reason for that. It means your body and soul need something in your life to give. You don’t have to feel guilty, nor should you, for wanting some rest. Compassion fatigue is a real thing; I’ve watched many volunteers in the church take a season of rest. I’ve certainly had to and it’s why pastors take sabbaticals. Rest is necessary.
In Mark 6, John the Baptist was executed, and, for Jesus, this was difficult as John was his cousin, the forerunner, and someone he cared deeply for. Mark then mentions the apostles began returning from their trips to share the gospel. These men were no doubt physically exhausted from their travels and emotionally exhausted from the death of John. Jesus knew they all needed rest; they didn’t even have the leisure time to eat. Rest was necessary. (Although they were right back out there, feeding the five thousand!)
In Exodus, Moses is taking on too much and his father-in-law no doubt notices that he is getting worn out. He gives some fatherly instruction that Moses should proactively share the responsibilities to alleviate the burden.
You must know your limitations; know when you need rest. If you need to take a break, that’s ok! If you need to step back in some ways at church, don’t be afraid to do so. Take care of yourself before you break. Take time for yourself, but I hope you’ll still find the small ways to pour into others. We’ll take a look at that more over the next few days.
Mark 6:30-32 NLT
30 The apostles returned to Jesus from their ministry tour and told him all they had done and taught. 31 Then Jesus said, “Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.” He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn’t even have time to eat.
32 So they left by boat for a quiet place, where they could be alone.
Exodus 18:14-23 NLT
14 When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he asked, “What are you really accomplishing here? Why are you trying to do all this alone while everyone stands around you from morning till evening?”
15 Moses replied, “Because the people come to me to get a ruling from God. 16 When a dispute arises, they come to me, and I am the one who settles the case between the quarreling parties. I inform the people of God’s decrees and give them his instructions.”
17 “This is not good!” Moses’ father-in-law exclaimed. 18 “You’re going to wear yourself out—and the people, too. This job is too heavy a burden for you to handle all by yourself. 19 Now listen to me, and let me give you a word of advice, and may God be with you. You should continue to be the people’s representative before God, bringing their disputes to him. 20 Teach them God’s decrees, and give them his instructions. Show them how to conduct their lives. 21 But select from all the people some capable, honest men who fear God and hate bribes. Appoint them as leaders over groups of one thousand, one hundred, fifty, and ten. 22 They should always be available to solve the people’s common disputes, but have them bring the major cases to you. Let the leaders decide the smaller matters themselves. They will help you carry the load, making the task easier for you. 23 If you follow this advice, and if God commands you to do so, then you will be able to endure the pressures, and all these people will go home in peace.”