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rest in the Lord

When was the last time you actually just took time to sit with the Lord and reflect, celebrate, joyfully thank Him? When was the last time you scheduled rest into the rhythm of your life? God set the example, yet it’s sometimes one of the hardest examples to follow. I pray that in the next 20 minutes you will feel confident and inspired to incorporate rest into your days, your weeks, your life. Rest God’s way.

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When it comes to rest, as a Believer, remember our rest is not just to take a break ONLY when we are over-exhausted. Why? Because that’s not how God modeled it for us. In Genesis chapter 2 God rested; not because He was tired but to reflect, to celebrate, to enjoy all He had done.

The Lord broke this down to me into TWO ways we can rest like Him and here they are:

  • 1. Intentionally Scheduled Rest

I am very clear on this point because I’ve used it and seen such change and growth in my own life. First of all, being intentional with time with the Lord is the game-changer. Not willy-nilly, but intentional. You know how it is when you’re in a relationship and sure you like spontaneity, sure you like the excitement of last minute surprises… every now and then. But for most of us, if we were completely honest, one of the main things we want in a relationship is consistency. Intentional consistency. 

I want you to say, “Good morning,” consistently. I want to have plans for dinner, consistently. I want to know that we plan to pray together, talk about our days, sit and enjoy one another, consistently. I want to plan to rest together, vacation together, and enjoy days to relax, together, consistently.

If you haven’t caught this from me in other podcast episodes or from knowing me beyond this podcast whether on social media or in person, my whole mission is to help you grow your relationship with God and the first step in doing that is recognizing that this is a real relationship. So treat it like one! And treat it like one that matters to you! One that you want to be in.

God intentionally rested on the seventh day. He declared the day holy. He did not rest because He was exhausted and overworked from creating the heavens and earth, the land creatures and all the life in water that we still have yet to discover more than two thousand years later. Oh and then there were humans. Yet God still was not resting because He was worn out, and He was not resting so that He could gear up for another week of overwhelm. His rest was intentionally scheduled. He rested to reflect. He rested to celebrate. He rested to sit in joy with Himself, and He did it intentionally and scheduled. 

Do you have intentionally scheduled time with the Lord? Do you have intentionally scheduled time to rest? And rest with the same motive that He rested?

Basketball was life for me. Actually, my sophomore year of high school (that’s grade 10 for all my Canadian friends), I wrote my final exams early so that I could move to Arizona with my basketball dreams to play for a high school there and travel with their summer program. Our first trip together was from Phoenix to San Diego. Friday and Saturday we won every game. We made it to the championship game. And you will not believe what happened next.

We loaded up the vans and headed back to Phoenix. WHAT!? 

See, what I didn’t understand, what I didn’t know, was that well above 70% of the students at the High School I was set to attend were of Mormon belief. Not that I had an issue with that at all, but based on their belief, Sunday is a holy day set aside. It is a Sabbath day to rest and a commandment from the Lord. In their faith, Sundays are reserved for time with the Lord. To rest and rejuvenate with the Lord. You are not to work, to play, to shop… and the fact that my new head coach as well as 90% of my new teammates were of this belief, playing on Sunday, even in a championship game, was not happening.

Y’all, I’m pretty sure I cried about it. I’m pretty sure once I got home I had a talk with my parents about it. As a 15 year old, I just could not comprehend forfeiting a game… like ever. 

Now? Oh I would still play in the game. But the respect and near admiration I have for the discipline of certain people in their faith walk is on another level. And I recognize it as that. 

One of the most common questions I get asked is how I am so consistent with reading my Bible every morning. Well, I set up intentionally scheduled time with the Lord. I purposefully and intentionally make Him my first in the morning. And through years of creating and building that habit, it’s now a non-negotiable in my lifestyle for me. If there were a 6am spin class a friend invited me to, I would either wake up at 5am to have time with God first, or I would say, “No,” and offer a 9:15am option. If I’m traveling with a friend, I will most often wake up early and spend time with God quietly in the bathroom while they sleep, or take my Bible and journal to the coffee shop with us while they have their morning coffee and work time.

Yes it takes time, yes it takes effort – every relationship does. You already know this, so I don’t know why you think your relationship with God should just be so easy and perfect thinking, “Oh He’s always there, He’s so loving and forgiving and so gracious and kind and merciful, this is great… I come to Him whenever I need…” You can keep going like that, but I truly believe there is so much more that God wants for each of us and He wants us to be able to experience all of Him. And in order to do that, we need to know Him more.

My life changed in 2017 when I finally decided to spend time with God, in His Word, every day. I have now created my signature program HOW TO CONSISTENTLY BUILD YOUR BIBLE TIME and in six weeks, I take you from your willy nilly Bible time of questions and insecurities to confidently spending time with God, in His Word every day; understanding and applying His truth to your life. I don’t just tell you to read your Bible, I help you with proven habit building techniques and strategies. I guide you to choose the right translation for you. I teach you hot to read and understand and interpret scripture.

I created this course because I really believe so often it’s not that we don’t know how, it’s not that we don’t know what to do, it’s not even that we don’t want to… it’s that we haven’t created the habit to do it consistently. And I believe the same is true about rest. My high school friends, they were raised and had clearly created the habit of resting on Sundays no matter what. It was their lifestyle. Now, I’m not saying you have to rest on Sundays. I’m not saying that at all. BUT, where can you intentionally schedule rest into your week. Remembering the kind of rest we are talking about here.

Don’t you go scheduling in a nap and calling it your rest. Remember, I’m challenging you and helping you grow in your relationship with God. I’m challenging you (and myself) to intentionally schedule the kind of rest God did. Rest to reflect. Rest to see and experience joy. Rest to celebrate. Rest to take a breath and look at what you’ve done, what God has done in you, for you, through you, and say, “Wow… that is good. In fact, it’s very good.” THAT kind of rest!

So, what will it look like?

Can you give Him a day? Can you give Him a morning? Can you unplug from social media for an entire day and focus on Him, reflecting on His goodness? Can you tell your family and friends that a certain day of the week is off limits to… whatever it is that keeps you going and going and going and going and not resting and reflecting, resting and celebrating, resting and seeking the Lord?

You know yourself. So what is it? What can you commit to? 

You know what happens when we create a habit and work toward doing that thing consistently? We experience growth. We experience change. We experience what was intended for us to experience. Sure it may seem like an inconvenience to you, at first, but think of the joy that is coming.

Here’s what happens if you never rest, and again, rest like God rested, rest to reflect, to celebrate to look at all He has done and say, “it is good… it is very good”. If you don’t rest like that with Him, chances are He has answered your prayer, He has provided, and you’ve given Him a quick fist bump followed by “thank you,” with a comma after it, or a semicolon. “Thank you, but when will You do this other thing?” “Thank you Lord, I still need this… “

God rested and reflected on ALL He had created and said it is good. 

So far everything I mentioned was about rest that is intentionally scheduled. Now I want to give you another option, another idea, another strategy. Rest that is

2. Intentionally Sporadic Rest

We can rest, intentionally sporadically. 

Let me explain my thought process on this: It’s like calling a time-out. Now, you’re going to have to stick with me through these analogies but I really pray they become as real to you as they have to me in the past couple weeks.

Ok, when I say time-out, you’re either like me and you’re into sports, or your picturing your toddler on the stool in the corner while you set the timer on the microwave for the amount of minutes as their age, right? Isn’t that how it’s supposed to go?

Sometimes I need to call a time-out in the middle of my day. I need some intentional time with the Coach. I need to sit, take a breather, look at what has happened, reflect, LISTEN, come together, and then go back to the mission. 

Let’s go deeper. As an athlete, as a coach, rarely is a time-out called because you’re tired. Now I’ll be honest, recovery is a benefit of a time-out, but that’s not often the primary intent behind it.

Stay with me here. Obviously I’m picturing a basketball game, so go there with me if you can. 

There are many different reasons to call a time-out!

1. Things are getting a little out of hand. 

The opposition is going on a run and you need to gather your team and have a chat. You come to the huddle, sit down, grab your water, and intentionally listen to your coach. The coach will most likely recap what’s been going on, the coach will reinforce what’s working, and send you off with a plan, with confidence and with encouragement to keep going. There’s no talk of losing the game, you just needed to stop the run. Oh, and usually in this type of time-out. There’s not even a new play called. The time-out was simply to stop the run of the opponent and instill confidence in your team.

You’re in the office and your boss is getting to you. You see the stack of work on your desk and receive an email that more is thrown on your plate. The overwhelm and almost panic is starting to set in. Call a time-out! Intentionally sit, take a breather, recap what HAS been going well (cause let’s be honest, those thoughts of this whole day being completely ruined because of these two conversations is not the truth). Listen for instruction from the Lord. Receive His encouragement. Pull from His confidence. Stand on His truth, then get back to the paperwork.

So, sometimes a time-out is called because things are getting a little out of hand. And one more thing: The coach doesn’t wait until you’re down 20 before they stop the bleeding, so don’t you wait that long either! 

  1. 2. To strategize when you have the ball. 
  2. You may already be winning. But this situation calls for a breather and a specific play. And no matter how many plays you’ve gone over in practice and know to call, the coach always has more up their sleeve. The coach always has the creative ability to draw up something fresh. And with their plan comes confidence and energy from you.

Things are going well, for you. You’ve just earned the promotion. Life at home is going great. Your family has found a rhythm and flow and you just feel like you’re in a good place. #winning. Although you’re ahead already, new opportunities will still come. And when they present themselves, call a time-out. God has a special strategy. God has a plan. God has a purpose. He has a plan you didn’t even think of, a plan you’ve never seen before. That time with Him to reflect, to celebrate, and to receive afresh can take you beyond what you imagined. Don’t forget to call time-out.

  1. 3. To sub in a player. 
  2. Sometimes the teams don’t even go into a huddle, they literally just use an entire time-out to substitute for another player.

Do you know that even every good idea and plan that glorifies God is not for you to complete? Do you know that just because you have the skills and the talents and the world has told you you’re good at something, do you know that doesn’t mean it’s what God has for you to do in this season? Do you remember in the Bible that David wanted to build the temple. THE TEMPLE. The temple for the Lord. Yet God told him no and it was for Solomon to build. Look, not everything is for you to do but if you don’t call a time-out and sub in someone else whom the coach has hand-selected for that particular position, that particular play, then you’re the one messing up. Call the time-out so that you can receive the Coach’s plan.

  1. 4. To ice the shooter. 
  2. Now, if you don’t know what this means, check this out: When a player from the opposite team is shooting two free-throws, you can call a time-out before their last free-throw to try to disrupt their rhythm. It’s called icing the shooter. If it’s a close game and you have the opportunity, you may want to call a time-out to ice the shooter.

Sometimes you will find yourself in a situation where you feel like opposition is coming up against you and you’re starting to get discouraged. Maybe you’re even the one who made a mistake (committed the foul) and got yourself in this situation. But let me tell you, all hope is not lost. Call a time-out. Go to God. Catch your breath. Recap the play, but don’t dwell on it. Your mindset has to look forward. Receive His encouragement, then continue on with His game plan.

  1. 5. To recognize the achievement and allow others to celebrate the player. 
  2. You’ve maybe seen this before. Yes it’s a time-out for substitution but the intent and purpose is so that the achievement of the player coming out can be recognized and celebrated. Let the fans give them a standing ovation.

There will always be another task, another item on the to-do list, another game. But don’t forget to call a time-out for the sole purpose to celebrate, and to let others recognize all that God has done in you, for you, and through you. There are new levels coming! Take a rest and celebrate.

I could keep going but I’ll let you think of your own reasons for time-outs and apply them to your life and relationship with God, your time with Him, your rest. And let me just clarify this point too. Because often with time-outs we think it’s just a short little moment. 

It can be. God can work in a 20 second time-out. But He is also effective in a full timeout. Whether your intentional sporadic rest time-out is your one hour lunch break to sit outside, or is a weekend away alone with your Bible and journal, God is the most effective coach you ever could have. 

Oh and one more thing, just because this is too good to mention. Do you know what happens in an NBA basketball game the first time the whistle blows and there is a dead ball after the clock goes under 6:59 and 2:59? 

A MANDATORY time-out. MANDATORY. Intentionally scheduled. Whether it’s needed or not, it’s mandatory. But do you know the best part? Because the mandatory TV time-outs are intentionally scheduled, often players don’t even need to use one of their other time-outs because they’re conditioned for the ones that are already scheduled at the same time every single game.

Do you need to call some time-outs? Do you need to set some mandatory time-outs? I know I do. Do you know what else is so amazing about God? He’s a no limit God. There will be no 1993 Chris Webber calling a time-out that you don’t have, penalizing your team and costing you the National Championship game moments. God is unlimited. He delights in your time-outs both intentionally scheduled, and intentionally sporadic.

How to Consistently Build Your Bible Time

The most foundational program to take you from questions and insecurity to confidently spending time with God, in His Word, every day, in just six weeks.

Kaela Headshot

Hey, I’m Kaela! I’m a Christian Mentor & Life Coach. My relationship with God is the top priority in my life and I am committed and dedicated to daily walking out His truth and touching every opportunity He has uniquely and strategically created me to reach.

My deep desire is to help others in their own relationship with God. I have a passion to uplift and encourage, to teach and to speak truth, God’s truth into every person and every situation.

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