Anna Rendell - Embrace Rest ||

My life right now is not very conducive to embracing rest. My life right now is not very simplified… but I’m craving both rest and simplicity.

Rest does not equal sleep. Rest is defined in several ways, and yes – sleep is one of them – but the definition of rest also includes: ‘stopping of work or activity, absence of movement, freedom from anxiety, place to stop and relax, support, pause in music, continue to be.’ It’s easy to brush off ‘embracing rest’ because we have a newborn or child who doesn’t sleep well, so neither do we. But embracing rest in order to flourish doesn’t necessarily mean sleeping.

Rest is that which enables us to pause.

We were created for rest, not busyness. We all know that ‘on the 7th day, God rested.’ He’d been busy at work, doing all good things, all fulfilling things, and even in the midst of His good things He needed rest. We can fill our calendar with the best of activities, groups and extras that we love, and we’re still going to need rest.

For some reason we think that if we stop moving things will fall apart, when really, if we don’t stop moving, we are what will fall apart.

It took us three years to get pregnant with our son, who is now 4. With unexplained infertility and miscarriages along the way, we weren’t sure if we’d be able to have any more kids, so when Sam turned 1 I threw the bash of the year. I worked for weeks to get ready, invited over 50 people, and worked myself into a Pinterest frenzy to make everything perfect. The morning of his party, I woke up with strep throat, which is my body’s way of yelling at me to slow it down. The party was perfect and beautiful, but I hardly remember it because of my antibiotic and Tylenol-filled haze.

I didn’t take any time to rest, to make the party simple, to let the celebration stand for itself without placing blue frosting snowflakes on three dozen white chocolate covered Oreos. Seriously.

Since that December we’ve had half a dozen more birthday parties and I’m proud to say that we’ve bought the cake, ordered the food, and I haven’t been sick at any of them. It took strep throat to force me to slow down and embrace the rest my body desperately needed, and also embrace the simplicity my family needed.

Embracing rest begins when we admit that we need it.

So why do we resist rest?

Join me here on Wednesday as we look at why we resist rest, and who rest is for {hint: it’s all of us!} Don’t miss the second part in this series on Embracing Rest!

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