be still

This has been a draining week. Some emotional lows. Some highs. Most of it isn’t life changing. (well, on one account possibly…) Nothing earth shattering for the most part. Most of it simply has to do with a really busy January and a little sickness added to it.

Our lives go through cycles. And that’s okay. This is simply the normal ebb and flow of life. All of life can’t be lived on mountain tops. That’s okay too. I don’t think I could handle that for too many days in a row.

But there are days when we are weaker than others. That’s a good thing.

There have been a few days this week when I’ve sensed my utter weakness. Some of that is physical, some spiritual. And doesn’t the physical and spiritual interlink so much?

When I am weak, He is strong. And that is what I have been feeling this week. Over and over, I have sensed my utter weakness. My body saying it needs physical rest, my soul saying it needs spiritual rest.

It’s okay to admit that our bodies and lives have cycles. It’s normal. God made us that way. Instead of fighting it, we need to take it as a gift from God. A reminder that our bodies and souls are fragile vessels that need to be cared for.

There are times when we must push through fatigue, yes. But most of the time we need to listen to our bodies. God gave us wonderful, amazing bodies. Our bodies are awe-inspiring, actually. Stefan has been infatuated with the workings of the body lately, and we’ve poured over the diagrams and pictures in our children’s encyclopedia. “Where does our food go when we eat, Mommy?” “Why do we need sleep?” “I have muscles and bones, Mom!

These bodies of ours are amazing things, capable of so much. And yet, they are very physical. They require sleep. They require nourishment. They require care.

Our souls require even more care. Nourishment that we get from God’s Word, preaching, and fellowship with other believers. Care and rest that we take by regularly seeking times to Be Still.

Are you feeling depleted? Have you been giving to your family and friends so much lately that you are empty? Is it time to rest and be still?

Do you sometimes feel guilty for having these periods of less productive times? Do you feel like you should be able to give 110% every single day of the week? Do you feel frustrated that after a few weeks of amazing productivity you need some slow time to take things in, ponder new ideas, and refresh your soul? Don’t.

“A season for everything.” This is often repeated for ‘big things,’ but I believe it is applicable to daily, weekly, and monthly cycles in life too. That is why God established a day of rest, that we all to often ignore in today’s society. God made our bodies to have times of productivity and times of rest. So plan for it, and take it when it your body needs it.

This weekend I’m resting. I’m taking intentional time to physically rest my body and I’m taking time to be still. To let my soul rest and ponder. To think. To calmly reflect on my life. To enjoy life cycles. To appreciate the ebb and flow of life. To “be still and know that I am God.

Because there is truly a season for everything. And sometimes we are flourishing and productive. And other times we need to take a day or two to rest. The older I get I realize that this not only applies to babies and teenagers and empty-nesters and births and deaths. But to Mondays and Saturdays. To Januaries and Augusts. To 6 ams and 8 pms.

It may not even seem like much has changed in the daily routine. Life still goes on. But mentally shifting my attitude to one of being still and resting, and not worrying about productivity is crucial. While my daily routines will go on, and my children will still need care, I won’t be worrying about items on a to-do list.

Don’t fight the ebb and flow. Appreciate them. Be grateful for them. They are a gift. A gift that if we respond to will allow us to get some physical rest, and even more importantly time to ponder and know the goodness of our God.

Do you appreciate the ebb and flows in your life? 

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Comments

  1. Rebekah says:

    Thank you for your perspective Johanna. A good friend suggested I check out your blog! I’m so glad I did. Enjoy your rest today…and squeeze your babies a little tighter.

  2. Love this perspective, Johanna! It’s so true… listen to what your body needs, and take care of God’s temple. Hope you enjoy relaxing this weekend!

  3. Sharon says:

    Thank you so much for this. Last night at 9pm I was sitting on the couch exhausted (physically and emotionally) from the day and trying to decide if I should get up and push through something that I wanted to get finished or if I should go up to bed and read. I realized my mind was just completely done. I started to get frustrated with myself, then remembered that it’s o.k. to take time to breathe and rest-and ultimately my work will look better later. Now, to get that task completed today in the midst of the other busyness!

    • Johanna says:

      OH, I totally know the feeling. I’ve learned though that at night especially I’m not very productive, so I’m usually better off to just go to bed. I hope you eventually got it done, though ;)

  4. katie says:

    So needed to read this this week! Thank you! I enjoy reading all your blog entries, even though I don’t have children yet they always apply to something in my life!

  5. Hope says:

    Ebb and flow… way too familiar. I prefer balance and it seems God is taking me there too. I needed rest and peace in my soul and body so God stopped me in several ways (wrote about it on my blog). I soon realized it’s not about me getting tired in all ways and then being put to a halt, no I really need to learn balance.

  6. I’m going through a similar time right now… a season of change and of weariness. (It’s kind of becoming a theme over on my blog.) But God is good and does bring rest, spiritually, emotionally, and physically. Thanks for sharing these encouraging words.

    BTW, found you via Deliberate Reader. I’ll be your newest follower!

    • Johanna says:

      Suzanne, thanks so much for reading along! I’m so sorry you are going through I difficult season. I pray God’s grace will carry you through.

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