Most of us have been there. We wake up, somehow peel ourselves out of the bed and reach for our phone. By the time we’ve scrolled through junk email, news, socials and all the wonderful, worrisome or weird things to be found on the Internet, the clock has moved much further than we thought.
A quick dash to the bathroom for a quick hygiene check. Done. Now to work, school or any number of demanding activities. Hours later, we can turn switch back into non-work mode. Finally.
However, we still have to make dinner, take out the trash, hopefully spend time with family or friends and still try to manage some “me” time. After we put on the streaming service and we’ve gone five episodes deep laying in bed and on our phone until midnight, we have just enough time for a quick verse and a prayer.
Then we awake again just to say “I’m so tired. I just don’t have enough time”.
Every day we are faced with challenges. Our social climate is changing. The culture is changing. The way we go through our daily lives is changing. It causes some discord within us. An uneasy restlessness. Always tired, always out of time and just plain drained.
The things we have to do and want to do every day are not bad. They only drain us when we let them. It’s easy to become emotionally, mentally and spiritually spent. How can we find rest in a day that seems to have none? The solution is as simple as three practical steps you can start doing today.
1. Prioritize What Really Matters
The first step is to prioritize what is important and drop what is not. God is the perfect example. He created earth before he made humans. He could have made anything else first, like a tree floating in space, or a human for that matter. He prioritized preparing a home for us before He made us.
Is God a top priority or an afterthought once you have spent all the good hours of the day? What good things are you doing that are keeping you from doing the best things? We can all reduce or let go of something. We give our time to things we see as a priority whether we know it or not.
2. Schedule Your Priorities
The second step is schedule your priorities. I can already hear the sighing and the groaning. “Schedule” is a bad word — kind of like “budget” in some of our minds. However, it is in fact one of the best tools we have in regaining the precious rest we so desperately wish we had. Don’t let the day control you. Instead, you should take control of your day.
I suggest giving Jesus some face time first thing in the morning. It’s much more rewarding than a few minutes of a random friend of a friend of a friend’s social media page you’d scroll through instead. Then start planning your day start to finish. You don’t need to be crazy strict. Life happens. But try to stick to what you put down as best as you can. You’re making time for what matters most. You’ll be amazed at how much time you seem to have afterward.
3. Sleep — Physically and Spiritually
The last step is in two parts. Start getting some real sleep and rest in God. These should now both be a little easier to do if you have done the first two steps. Exercise is great, as is a good diet, but nothing beats a good night’s sleep! It gives your body and mind a chance to recover.
Then there is resting in God. When you are emotionally, mentally, and physically ready to call it quits He is there ready to give you rest. Talk to Him and read the promises of rest he put in his word for us. You will finally be able to wake up, no longer restless but restful in body, soul and spirit.
Joshua Lang is a husband, father, writer, storyteller, and kid’s church teacher. He graduated Los Medanos College with degrees in English, Social and Behavioral Science, and Arts and Humanities.