June 23, 2023 • Article, De Pree Journal, Marketplace Leaders
Growing up in Southern California, I never ached for summer the way I do since moving to the Pacific Northwest. The cloudy and cold winters leave my body, mind, and perhaps even my soul longing for the warmth of sunny summer days. As the cold of winter fades, my energy builds and my calendar fills. With summer comes endless opportunities for play: beach days, camping trips, weddings, game nights, BBQs, vacations, backyard dinners, live music—the list goes on.
We need to play, and with summer comes things to do, people to see, and a sun that likes to hang out a little bit later, too. But the reality is that, for a lot of us, the rest of our life doesn’t pause and basque in the glow of summer. Our jobs continue to move forward and continue to demand our focus and attention. Our kids are out of school which requires new schedules and perhaps a newly disrupted at-home work life. Even our vacations can end up draining us, leaving us in need of just a few more days at home to recoup. For me, summertime is a highlighted example of my feeble attempts to try and do it all.
Maybe this is how you feel, too. While you eagerly anticipate all the fun summer brings, you also know that burning the candle at both ends can leave you fried and drained. As humans, we tend to forget that we have very real limitations—physiological, mental, and spiritual limitations. Even Jesus, though both fully God and fully man, had human limits. As a man, Jesus had to sleep, eat, and get away from time to time to be alone and pray. We cannot do it all, and we weren’t designed to do it all. That’s why in Genesis 1 we see God design for us a designated time that is set apart to rest—the Sabbath. But the implementation of the Sabbath was intended to mean so much more than just a day. In the words of Norman Wirzba, the Sabbath is meant to shape us into a people who live a life-long “rhythm of rest and delight.”
Are you longing for a life rhythm that incorporates more rest and delight? Do you know that you tend to over-commit and drain yourself in an attempt to do it all? Are you curious to know how this ancient, biblical concept can be applied to your modern, everyday life? We want to help.
We have gathered a list of resources that inform how we can engage in Godly rest and play. Our hope is that these resources can serve to help you shape not just a summer practice, but a year-long rhythm of rest and play that will enhance and sustain your life and leadership.
Embracing Rhythms of Work and Rest: From Sabbath to Sabbatical and Back Again by Ruth Haley Barton
Living the Sabbath: Discovering the Rhythms of Rest and Delight by Norman Wirzba
Sabbath as Resistance: Saying No to the Culture of Now by Walter Brueggemann
An Uncommon Guide to Retirement: Finding God’s Purpose for the Next Season of Life by Jeff Haanen, Chapter 2: “Sabbath”
“Rest, Play, and the Costs of Believing ‘I Can Do It All’” Article by Michaela O’Donnell
“The Discipline of Sleep” Devotion by Uli Chi
“Are You Keeping Busy?” Article by Matthew Dickerson
“The God of Play” Devotion by Mark Roberts
“Wisdom and Sabbath Rest” Article by Tim Keller, Redeemer City to City
“Reset: Embracing the Sabbath Part 1 and Part 2” Articles by Kristi Rathbun, Denver Institute for Faith and Work
Banner image by Rafael Cisneros Mendez on Unsplash.