Sunday, November 20, 2011


As I type, it's a rainy, gloomy Sunday. The entire house is asleep. It's peaceful.

I listen to the gentle patter of rain.

My thoughts go to the idea of rest.

Sabbath rest.

As a mama, I feel the constant demand of mama-ing.

When the girls are awake I feed them, dress them, fix their hair, read to them, play with them, teach them, change diapers, referee disputes, and kiss bumps and bruises.

When the girls are asleep, I prepare meals, mend torn books, fold laundry, clean, straiten, organize, have my own meal, and sit down for just a moment to catch my breath. All, so I can do the above list all over again when they wake up.

It's constant, and I find myself questioning, even agonizing over whether it's enough. Mama-ing is an important job, after all. Tending to God's sheep.

In all of that, I often forget. I'm a sheep too.

I need rest. Physical rest, yes. More importantly, I need soul rest.

I need to intentionally sit and bask in the delight that God takes in me, his sheep, his daughter. I need to let the words, is very good... that Jesus spoke when he created me, soak into my soul.

None of my lists above do anything to change God's delight and pleasure in who I am. Meditating on that is freeing, and brings great rest to my soul.

Practically? How do I do this?

Connecting with God is such a personal and intentional thing. Praying and reading the Bible are such Sunday school answers. While important and necessary, connecting with God is so much more than that.

I find Sabbath rest in my garden. He makes my flowers lovely and our vegetables flourish--that beauty seeps into my soul. Even in the winter--the bones of last year's growth is full of beautiful promise.

I find Sabbath rest in a good glass of wine. The complex flavors dance over my tounge--I whisper, Thank you, Jesus.

I find Sabbath rest in words. Writing. Reading. Listening.

How do you find Sabbath rest?



Anonymous said...

I found Sabbath rest in reading this post...thank you.

MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) said...

This is an awesome post, Julia. It is so very hard to rest...physically, but more so mentally and spiritually.

There is ALWAYS stuff to do after the girls are in bed. I often run, run, run...but I know if I don't force myself to sit down at some point, I'll hit a wall...and that's no good for anyone.

Even when I do physically rest, though, it's hard to turn off the daily grind in my mind.

I love seeing how you find spiritual inspiration in flowers, wine, and words. Beautiful!

Corinne Ritz said...

I find Sabbath rest to be almost non-existent. It is maybe the craziest day of the week for me. We get up and we've got get 5 crazy kids in their Sunday best, and then to church on time. We come home and I feel like I can go crazy if I'm not careful to make a nice dinner, and create fun family time. I try to do dinner prep the day before, and take myself out of the kitchen more. That's a good first step for me.

Amy Sullivan said...

Oh, that "soul rest" is tough for me to find some days, but sometimes I get up in the quiet of the morning and capture it, and sometimes I capture it on walks.

Michelle DeRusha@Graceful said...

I'm with "Journey" above -- I found rest in this post, especially in imagining that quiet rain.

I usually find it outdoors, too -- in warmer weather, sitting on the back patio.

Desiree said...

Sometimes I think as moms the hardest command to follow is to rest. In my tradition we observe the Sabbath by resting from our work, aside from "works of necessity or mercy." Which is true, totally true - but sometimes everything a mom does feels like necessity or mercy - or both!

My Sunday lesson for myself is to let go - to accept that our Sabbath rest is more important, one day out of seven, than getting all the dishes done or sweeping up all the Cheerios. It's a tough one for me, though, sometimes.

Bless you!! :)

Shanda said...

I find Sabbath rest in my garden as well. Sometimes when I cannot concentrate on God, I just go outside, sit in a lawn chair and listen. He speaks to me most there, and lets me concentrate on Him

Courtney said...

Love this post, and I agree - I just found rest here, too. My husband and I have been talking about the importance of Sabbath in our home; how we need to say "no" to things on Sunday and keep it as a calm, restful, at home day. We don't always abide by that, but it has been quite freeing to admit that we need it! But we need Sabbath rest during the week, too, and I find it in good music, a deep breath and even here when I catch up on meaningful blogs before dashing off for two preschool Thanksgiving parties. Thank you :)

Janice C Johnson said...

The deep breath, reading a post such as yours, petting the dogs, all create a little space of rest. I'm with you about gardening (or simply being outside)... besides the beautiful miracle of plant life, there's the fact that when you're out there you can't hear housework calling!

Jean Wise said...

Such a peacefulness reading this post. well written blog. It is hard to say no to all the demands but I too try to take a different route on Sundays. One habit I do have for rest is to journal on Sunday afternoons.

coming over from Jen's blog hop


I love it that you are recognizing rest in so many ways.


Laura said...

Sabbath rest for me is climbing in His lap and just being for a time. That "mama-ing" never stops. But some seasons are just more "ing" than others, I think. Praying for your rest, sweet friend.