A Day of Rest

Winter storm Wesley…  He has delivered quite a blow to South Dakota, one that we’re going to be feeling for a while.  As I write this article on Friday morning, we are snowed in here at home.  I’ve already seen two 4-wheel drive pickups get stuck on the streets by my home.  Thanks to my trusty snowblower, my driveway is clear, but there’s no guarantees beyond that! 

 I’m sure this storm will be talked about for years to come.  The damage and affects of the storm are still being assessed.  Of course, many of the school kids are happy.  They get a couple days out of school.  I remember feeling that way when a blizzard gave us a “snow day.”  However, when these days have to be made up by the end of the year…well, that won’t be such a point of celebration.  I know of a few adults who were celebrating the fact that they too got an unexpected gift…a day off of work because they couldn’t get out.  Woo Hoo!!! YA for unexpected gifts like that!!!

 We do tend to pack so much into our days and weeks.  Work, activities, appointments, tasks, etc.  We all tend to be constantly on the go.  I know I tend to be that way, and my personal and work calendar reflects this reality for me.  It is sort of nice when the gift of having a day where one must stay home, comes along.  It really is a gift.  It is something most of us need. 

 But you know, the reality is we have been given this gift of Time-Off.  It’s just that we ignore, or don’t use the gift.  What I mean is if you read the creation story in Genesis, the first book of the Bible, God displays for us and then tells us that 6 days we can work, etc.  But the 7th day is to be a Sabbath, a day of rest.  God knew from the beginning the importance of having a break, having a time of rest in our lives, and having a time to reconnect with God.  So, God built “rest” into the rhythm of our week, that’s how valuable it is.  But the truth is, we humans have pretty much chosen to ignore the “gift” that God said we needed and provided for us.  I have heard people proudly say, “I’m on the go 24/7!”  But that isn’t as it is supposed to be.

 Maybe we Methodists should say that winter storm “Wesley” is a gift from our founder, John Wesley.  Wesley was a hard working / driven man.  But he also recognized the need for rest too.  So, maybe “Wesley” is simply reminding us…we need to pause…we need to slow down…we need to rest.  Rest really is a part of God’s plan for our lives.  Rest really is supposed to be a part of the rhythm of our week.  Rest really is a gift from God. 

 I realize that a blizzard brings a different kind of work to many of us.  I’ll be out shoveling and blowing snow once the snow plow makes its way down Sawgrass Avenue.  And yes, computers make it more difficult to have a snow day…because we can work from home (like what I’m doing right now).  But still, may we allow Wesley, the storm, to remind us of the importance of the gift that God gave us “In the beginning”…REST.

 Serving Together,

Pastor Keith

 Join us Sunday for our Palm Sunday celebration.  Worship is at 8:30 and 11:00.  The children will sing at both services.  Also join us for all our Holy Week activities.  Wednesday’s Downtown meal/worship/studies, beginning at 5:15, Maundy Thursday Service, Thursday at 7:00 pm; Good Friday Service, Friday at 7:00 pm; Easter Sunrise at 7:00 am, Easter Brunch at 7:30, Easter Worship at 8:30 and 11:00 am.  Hope to see you there.