Written by Amy Reinhardt
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” -Matthew 11:28
What does it mean to rest?
Many associate resting with being lazy. However, laziness is the unwillingness to utilize our energy. Rest is how we refresh ourselves and restore strength.
Ongoing disinclination to labor leads to the deadly sin of sloth. Sloth can also come from a busyness filled with distractions that prevent meaningful relationships.
I’ve recently learned I don’t fully understand the meaning of rest. I’ve always been a go-go-go personality. I was a woman who kept up with a full schedule.
After I got struck down with kidney disease, everything got stripped away – my job, my apartment, my social life, my routine, etc. I felt lost. But I wasn’t, because what I found ended up being far more valuable.
I rediscovered my relationship with Jesus.
He is the one who truly gives rest when we’re most in need. I realized all the busyness of my former life was a mere distraction. It didn’t define who I was, like I thought.
When I focus on the whisper of Jesus over the roar of the world, I have a stronger desire to be the best version of myself. I feel more confident, content, and calm. Striving for spiritual stillness is what I need, especially being sick.
As hard as it has been to admit, I don’t have the same energy as before. Even if I wanted to, I can’t keep up. When I run around and do too much, I end up feeling weak, tired, and out of sorts. It’s never worth it.
I’m learning to say no. If I’m not feeling well enough, I turn down opportunities to spend time with friends. These sacrifices are the hardest because of how much I love community.
Even though it feels awful in the moment, every sacrifice has a heavenly reward. Jesus is calling all of us to rest with His sweet, gentle whispers. We need to listen.
I know now that it’s not about how much I can do; it’s what I choose to do. Am I resting so I can restore myself and keep serving the Lord?
“Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from Him.” -Psalm 62:1
At 28 years old, Amy Reinhardt has been an Ascension parishioner for over half her life. She led Disciples Dwelling and was heavily involved in the young adult ministry up until getting diagnosed with end-stage renal disease. She strives to radiate Christ’s light and love to all who are blessed to know her. If you’d like to read Amy’s health updates: https://www.caringbridge.org/visit/amyreinhardt.