Most mornings of the week, I am able to drop my teenage daughter off at school on my way to work. During our 30-minute drive she often delights in turning her middle-aged father on to new music, both Christian and secular. She is quick to call me out for only knowing the first few words of a song, but still insisting on trying to sing the entire song. Okay, so how many more words do I need to know other than “Hello” for Adelle’s song of the same name. This is a beautiful bonding time with my daughter.
So imagine my feeling of connectedness when I texted my daughter the other day to tell her that I had a new favorite secular song by a band called Twenty-One Pilots. She responded back, I like that song too dad. Although, I expect her like for the song was in the beat and flow, while mine was more about the symbolism of what was contained in the lyrics.
Wish we could turn back time, to the good ol’ days,
When our momma sang us to sleep but now we’re stressed out.
Is your life stressed? Are you often in a hurry? Do you find yourself overwhelmed or out of control? Do you get less than seven hours of sleep each day? Do you need some ideas on how to find more rest in your work?
Today begins the second of the eight principles of the introduction to C.R.E.A.T.I.O.N. Health Discovery. The information below is from the book C.R.E.A.T.I.O.N. Health Discovery. As you read this introduction, if you wish to read the entire book by Drs. Des Cummings, Jr. and Monica Reed, please visit this link: https://merchandise.creationhealth.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=sem-026
The “R” in CREATION Health stands for rest. Rest refreshes, rejuvenates, and rebuilds the mind, body and spirit. Rest empowers you to function at your best. Optimally, rest includes a good night’s sleep and time to unwind daily, weekly & annually.
Do you know the wonderfully sweet pleasure of leaning back and reveling in a good rest? That’s the gift God exemplified when he himself rested on the seventh day. It was an intentional day that he ordained to send a message to us how essential rest is.
Regardless of its length, rest offers energy for the burned-out, and restoration for the broken. Rest replaces weariness, exhaustion and fatigue with peace, energy and hope. Rest. It’s God’s personal way of saying: “Let’s take some time together, just you and me.”
Scientific Support for Rest
Not all sleep is the same. Dr. Kruger, at the University of Kentucky, found that the immune system actually triggers the type of sleep best for healing. During this stage of sleep, the body releases growth hormone. As its name implies, growth hormone stimulates the growth and repair of damaged tissues. It also stimulates lymphocytes (white blood cells), needed to fight diseases – causing microbes (germs), an important step in healing actually brought about by the immune system. When you start to feel tired, it may be your immune system signaling the need for healing sleep. Rest and recovery balance out stress. Without this R&R, you will never achieve optimal health.
While sleep comes to mind as a primary way to get our needed rest, there are other ways to rest apart from sleep. One of these is a relaxing massage. Your skin is the largest organ in the body and, when touched, can release pain-countering endorphins as well as produce immune system stimulating growth hormone.
Getting Out of the Fast Lane
We are an over – stimulated society.
The world around us seeks to cram more and more into each 24 – hour day. Businesses run at an ever – quickening pace. Our schedules are jam-packed with great, kid-centered activities. There are more good things to be involved with than ever before, but must a family do all of them?
According to the National Sleep Foundation, more than 100 million Americans suffer from sleep deprivation. More than 40 percent of Americans sleep less than six hours a night. And guess what? Stress is the number one cause for poor sleep.
Finding the Balance
With each beat our hearts teach us the importance of respecting natural rhythms—the necessity to balance work and rest. It is important to note that between each powerful beat of your heart, it rests. This resting period allows the heart to reload—to do the work of the next beat. Likewise, you and I need time to “reload.” We need rest.
We can have a very active day, and then we need a time for rest. We need sleep in order to stay healthy. Quakers have a process called “centering down”. It refers to a calm, stillness within a restful place we can feel and go to, with practice, when life gets off-kilter.
God’s healing rest is as close as the beating of your heart. He has placed the rhythm of rest within the very pulse of your own body by giving rest in each heart. Why not step out of the fast lane and enjoy some sweet rest. Your body will bless you for it.
The Rest Zone
In our stressed out world, in which families are increasingly falling apart and thousands visit hospital emergency rooms each day because their stress has become a major health crisis, we desperately need the kind of rest that God offers. Here is my paraphrase of the famous invitation Jesus Christ made in Matthew 11:28: “Come unto me all you who labor to exhaustion, and I will give you rest”.
You Deserve a Sabbatical
In fact, rest is part of the plan that God gave to us at the very beginning. He established an island of time at the end of each week for spiritual and physical restoration. The book of Genesis tells us how God provided for this rest. During a six-day period God created all the living things on our planet.
It was an amazing week of work, and God knew it. But then watch what happened: “Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array. By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all this work” (Gen. 2; 1,2)
Was he worn out from his work? Not likely. Instead he was exemplifying and building a rhythm of rest in our weekly cycle. God was creating an island of rest in our ocean of labor. In other words, God is saying “Great news! You don’t have to work this day and you don’t have to feel guilty about it. This is a day for resting.”
Discovering True Rest
Rest, of course, can come in many forms—through sleep, through relaxation, through meditation, through prayer, through worship, and even through relationships. Mainly I’ve found that true rest comes through a divine person—and that person is Jesus Christ.
To more fully discover how to receive true rest, take a few moments to complete the “Rest Test” at this link:http://creationhealth.com/Articles/Article-View/id/40?returnUrl=http://creationhealth.com/Default.aspx?TabId=137
Here are three (of seven listed in the book) practical steps to ensure your Rest success:
Pray—Worry and anxiety often stand between us and real rest and health. Let Him know your worries and cares. “And the peace of God, which transcends all understating, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)
Sleep—Develop a regular sleep pattern. Reduce caffeine intake; especially late in the day; reduce alcohol; avoid eating large, fatty meals late in the day that can keep you awake; adopt a relaxing bedtime routine, something that prepares you for sleep, such as a warm bubble bath or listening to soft music.
Laugh—The book of Proverbs in the Bible tells us that a cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Another way of saying this is that laughter is the best medicine. When we laugh, our blood pressure goes down, our muscles relax, and our brain releases chemicals (endorphins) that make us feel better. Find whatever makes you laugh, then do it!
Steve Johnson is a Certified C.R.E.A.T.I.O.N. Health Seminar Leader. For more information about when the full seminar is being presented or to have it presented to your group or organization, please visit the Heaven by Health Wellness Academy at www.heavenbyhealth.com
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30 The Message (MSG)
”There is more to life than increasing its speed.” Mahatma Gandhi