30 The apostles gathered around Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught.
31 He said to them, “Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.
32 And they went away in the boat to a deserted place by themselves.
33 Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they hurried there on foot from all the towns and arrived ahead of them.
34 As he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things.
REST A LITTLE WHILE
I have to admit this is an area where I am greatly challenged in my life. (Actually, a few areas, but this is the one I’m talking about right now!). It is so hard to “turn it off.” Those who are also challenged in this way know exactly what I mean….I struggle with relaxation.
I might get a failing grade in ‘just chillin’…after all, there are children to be mothered, powers to be challenged, young warriors who need encouragement, colleagues who need…
It just goes on and on.
But, this is my life. I don’t live a “to-do” list. This is how I express my discipleship. I take my friendship with Jesus seriously. I go hard because He went hard for me.
No, I don’t have a “super” or “messiah” complex – that would be too easy. I’m so aware that I’m not super. Really. I’m so aware that all I have to offer is the kind of brokenness that bears witness to “all things work together for the good.”
Rather, it’s so hard to turn off the “cry out for social justice spigots/mother all the children in my presence behavior” because I really am sold out. Totally. I believe the “stuff” I’m walking and talking about…I’m convinced of the power of the friendship we share, the efficacy of the path I’m walking and Who I am following….I just think this stuff is right.
Ah, but Jesus says that everybody needs to “rest a little while.”
In Mark’s Gospel, the disciples shared with Jesus everything they had been doing and Jesus’ response was, “Whew, y’all take a break, hear?!” No protesting, no campaigns – “go away to a deserted place…”
Deserted places are good for us, especially when deserted in this case means places where we can rest, put “it” down, chill, take a break. Maybe take a moment to pick up something else that has nothing to do with anything.
What I also like about this account is that when the disciples take a break – Jesus steps up, meeting needs with compassion….
Jesus steps up. He’s got “it” and us, too – all in his hands.
I am so humbled to be called his friend, so I’ve got no complaints about how he uses me for his purposes (that’s actually kind of amazing and still renders me speechless.) But what’s more humbling is to hear him say, “Hey, thanks friends, go get something to eat, take a break, I’ve got this.” John’s Gospel says it this way: “I no longer call you servants…I call you friends…”(John 15)
I’m planning a trip where I will be able to drink in the new scenery of God’s majesty; walk hand in hand with my husband and just “be” out on the town; and, to put myself in someone else’s hands for care and hospitality. I don’t plan to blog, write, call, conference, check emails, preach, teach, present, give interviews or anything….cause, I hear Jesus loud and clear…take a break, Sis.
But when I come back, watch out ’cause I’m coming back hard for my Friend.