To honor the theme of today’s post—slowing down—I’m going to write a brief blog.
In our driven, Western Christian world, we often don’t know how to slow down. We fail to rest. More than that, when we do slow down, guilt (false guilt) often overcomes us, shaming us for taking a brief break to rest, recuperate, and refresh.
Jesus Models Slowing Down from “People Activity” to “Withdraw” for Time Alone
- “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed” (Mark 1:35).
- “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed” (Luke 5:16).
- “Jesus withdrew with his disciples to the lake” (Mark 3:7).
- “Jesus went out to a mountain side to pray, and spent the night praying to God” (Luke 6:12).
- “When Jesus heard that John the Baptist had been beheaded, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place” (Matthew 14:13).
- “Because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.’ So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place” (Mark 6:31-32).
- “After Jesus had dismissed the crowds, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was still there alone” (Matthew 14:23).
- “Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray. Later that night, the boat was in the middle of the lake, and he was alone on land” (Mark 6:45-47).
- “Once when Jesus was praying in private and his disciples were with him, he asked them, ‘Who do the crowds say I am?’” (Luke 9:18).
- “Jesus went on from there and walked beside the Sea of Galilee. And he went up on the mountain and sat down there” (Matthew 15:29).
- “One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray’” (Luke 11:1).
- “They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Sit here while I pray’” (Mark 14:32).
It’s Okay to Rest
It’s okay to rest.
It’s okay to slow down.
It’s okay to take a break.
It’s okay to clear your schedule.
It’s okay to take a daily sabbatical—and sometimes a day-long sabbatical, and sometimes a week-long sabbatical, and sometimes an even longer sabbatical.
It’s okay to withdraw from people activity.
It’s okay to be still.
It’s okay to be alone.