Sometimes Jesus sought solitude to escape His enemies, sometimes to commune with His Father, sometimes to pray for strength, and sometimes to rest. He encouraged His disciples to rest, too, as noted in the Mark 6:31 verse above.
However, I imagine this was as hard a message for disciples of His era as it is for us today.
Worries press, schedules tighten, guilt hovers, and the world needs us 24/7 to shore up its crumbling edges, no?
Yet, even the Man Who gave to the literal last drop of His blood at the appointed time rested in the days and months preceding. Far from the crowds, if possible. It was part of His plan and part of creation’s plan.
Included in the blueprint that thrust the universe in motion, routed seas, leveled and populated continents was one culminating day of blessed respite. God reserved a day to rest: work done, feet up, as it were. And, I like to think, to survey, once more, creation’s bounty. And it was good.
And He invites us in our universe to take time off, too.
Sometimes we need solitude with Jesus for shelter from physical, emotional, and spiritual storms; sometimes we need to sit close to the throne, listening; sometimes we need to consult with God about the quest ahead–or behind.
But at other times, even as Jesus relaxed, recreated, refreshed, replenished, and renewed away from His own demanding earthly schedule we can stop the forward motion for a while, too; take a nap; decompress a bit while shoulders ease down from ears; chill, if you will. These days especially, I think, as global tensions mount.
Despite the crush of the urgent or even the ceaseless demands of the everyday we are still invited to that quiet place, figuratively, “in Christ,” and literally, too.
“Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden,” He says, “and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28, KJV).
photo credit: https://www.google.com/search?q=public+domain+images+of+rest&client=firefox-a&hs=d5W&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&channel=sb&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=Yak8U7qaOq-02AXxxYHAAQ&ved=0CEQQsAQ&biw=1024&bih=614#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=0QWiqidvLiB74M%253A%3Bui-kVWD0HlVh2M%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.clker.com%252Fcliparts%252Fd%252F9%252Fe%252Fd%252F13167268891306505063Rest%252520Area%252520Sign.svg.med.png%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.clker.com%252Fclipart-147259.html%3B297%3B299