Grabbed a book called, The Holy Wild, off the shelf last night for some light reading before bed. It's a book about trusting in the character of God. In the background, The Kingdom of Heaven was playing on the TV, depicting the defending of Jerusalem against the Muslims in the 12th century.
The character of God set against the character of the people of God - interesting contrast.
The chapter I re-read was one on rest entitled, The Gift we Refuse. Here are some highlights:
"One of the triumphs of the cult of busyness is that most of us feel guilty for stopping. Efficiency is our fetish, production our worship. If you are not producing, and quickly, what good are you? How can you justify your existence without busyness? How can you account for your being if not on the ledger of your doing?"
Did you catch those two contrasting words in the last sentence?
"Being" and "Doing"
This chapter is all about "Sabbath": the setting aside of time (a day a week biblically) to give attention to our being rather than our doing. Buchanan, the author of this book and a guy who lives about an hour away from me at the moment, goes on to say, "Sabbath is imitating God's own rest in order that we might become more like God and yet know that we are not God."
We get this backward, don't we (well, I get it backward anyway). We refuse to rest because we want to be God. He rested to model what we need because we are not.
One last quote:
" 'Take a day off!' is the message of Sabbath. Relax. Sleep in. Take a midday nap. Play. Party. Eat. Dance. Be like children."
One last thought:
I leave tomorrow for two weeks in Montréal. I'm really looking forward to taking 8 students along for the adventure.
I'll see friends, meet new people, speak a bit at the training, eat well, laugh large, probably be broken by some of what I see, sit in wonder more than a few times, get up early and go to bed late. I will be "doing" a lot.
Yet in the midst of it, please pray that I give attention to "being more and more like Christ" in my activity of rest (yes, rest is active and takes work ... but that is am exploration for another time).