Come Apart and Rest a While
"The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all they had done and taught. Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, 'Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.'"1
"According to a Greek legend, in ancient Athens a man noticed the great storyteller Aesop playing childish games with some little boys. He laughed and jeered at Aesop, asking him why he wasted his time in such frivolous activity.
"Aesop responded by picking up a bow, loosening its string, and placing it on the ground. Then he said to the critical Athenian, 'Now, answer the riddle, if you can. Tell us what the unstrung bows imply.'
"The man looked at it for several moments but had no idea what point Aesop was trying to make. Aesop explained, 'If you keep a bow always bent, it will break eventually; but if you let it go slack, it will be more fit for use when you want it.'"2
So many of us today, including me, (at least in the Western world) are bogged down with being too busy. Much of life seems to be controlled by the tyranny of the urgent—unforeseen crises or needs that daily pop up unexpectedly—all of which are a vivid reminder that I, too, need to "come apart and rest a while—before I come apart." Even Jesus and his disciples, in the midst of their busy ministry, needed to take time out to get some rest. Dare we do less? There are times when we, too, need to loosen the bow.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for the reminder that I need, not only to be diligent in my work and service, but also to take time to get needed rest every day. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's name, amen."
1. Mark 6:30-31 (NIV).
2. Our Daily Bread, June 6, 1994.