The Power Of Doing Less
I was doing a Peloton workout last week and rather than going hard like I usually do, I was really tired so did a Recovery Ride. To do something to move my body, but not as intensely as usual. The instructor, one of my faves, Ally Love introduced the class by talking about the power of doing less. Her message really resonated with me because its been a hectic few weeks, within the church and personally. And I’m sure the majority of us are the same; when we find that hamster wheel pick up speed, we try to keep up, rather than try to jump off and take a breather to be able to continue. But why are we like this, when in actual fact, when you take time out to slow down or relax, you become a better person, leader, parent etc. It’s not selfish but in fact it’s an act of self care investing in yourself.
God wanted us to do this once every week. I am yet to find a whole day that I can dedicate to rest or the Sabbath. But the summer holidays are around the corner and the kids will be home, and you’ll maybe have some time off work to hang out with them or go away yourself. And while hanging out together as a family unit is so important, it is also important to take time out for yourself as an individual. Treat yourself to a massage, a lie in, a walk, time out to read a book, pray, connect with God. Make sure over the summer you take time out for you, for as long as you can make work for your season of life and your schedule.
For me I’m having my first taste of holiday with a child. And though I’m really looking forward to it, I know it won’t be the same relaxing time that I’m used to when Dee and I used to go away pre pandemic and pre parenthood. Our first holiday will be with family, so I’m hoping that there will be some time our daughter can spend with her grandparents, aunties and uncles so I can nap, and read and go on walks every now and then, solo and/or with Dee. It won’t be the same, but my plan is to carve out some time. And I hope you get the chance to do the same.
As we’re now half way through the year, why not use the summer to check in with yourself and with God to see if you’re still on the right path He intended for you this year; you may have had a plan for things to do/achieve, people to see and spend time with, causes to help out with. But as time goes on, life gets more hectic and distractions happen. Why not use this time to check in and make sure you feel refreshed and back on track to see out the rest of this year.
Here are 3 prayers for rest, renewal and relaxation.
A Prayer For Rest
Jesus, I am tired. My mind is frazzled, my hands are full, and my emotions are reeling with all the things I have to do. Help me to come to you in the middle of the overwhelm. Remind me of your ever-present help in my times of need. Show me how to rest in You. Reveal to me both the beauty in the work and in the rest. Calm my anxious thoughts and encourage my heart with Your nearness. Instruct me in your ways. Bring productivity and contentment out of the peace and comfort I find. Settle me in Your truth and in Your love.
Now may the Lord of peace himself give you his peace at all times and in every situation.2 Thessalonians 3:16
A Prayer For Renewal
Jesus, I am weary. I spend each day busy but feel I accomplish little. Help me to set healthy boundaries and prioritize by Your Holy Spirit. I have my to-do list, but what do You have for me today? Help me not to miss Your divine appointments. Set my focus on things above and keep my eyes on You. Reveal to me what I should hold on to, and what I need to let go. Empower and equip me for the work You have for me. Give me the lasting strength of abiding in You. Renew my mind, body, and spirit, Lord, and make me whole.
Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.Isaiah 40:31
A Prayer for Relaxation
Jesus, I am stressed. Help me to accept your invitation to come empty and receive the rest I need. Help me to willingly release my fear, my worries, my agenda, and my to-do list. Ease the tension and replenish my body. Silence the voices of doubt and speak Your words of truth. Remove the heaviness of my day and pour out abundantly into my life. Fill me with Your peace, joy, and love. Fill me until the overwhelm is consumed by Your grace, and my life reflects the beauty of resting in You.
Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.Matthew 11:28–30