the good way

3. REST.

Session 3 • Sabbath • Activation

Sabbath is most clearly described in the Scriptures as a day of rest when we let our bodies and minds fall into peace.

Jesus said:”Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 28-30

The Sabbath is a gift to us from God. A time to cease from our striving and to enter into a time of abiding, knowing that our value is based on who we are, and not what we do. Sabbath is about creating space for God to restore our souls.

When we begin to practice a regular rhythm of Sabbath, we will want to pay attention to the distinction between activities that are simply recreational (binge watching Netflix/scrolling social media etc that often provide a false sense of rest) and activities that are actually restorative, and lead us into a deeper awareness of God’s loving presence.

REST (verb)

cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, or recover strength

As you enter into a time of rest, notice how you are responding to it. Does it feel comfortable or uncomfortable? Do you feel drawn to it or are you experiencing restlessness or resistance? Just notice these and accept them without judgement. Bring them into conversation with Jesus.

In addition to resting, you may also want to attend to the sources of your exhaustion. In ‘Invitation to Retreat’, Ruth Hayley Barton suggests that we prayerfully review the sources of our exhaustion by reflecting on these questions:

Am I exhausted because I am:

  1. Functioning out of an inordinate sense of ought and should?
  2. Finding it difficult or even humiliating to ask for or receive help from others?
  3. Living more as a performer than the person God created me to be?
  4. Living with few or no boundaries in my service or availability to others?
  5. Always feeling that I should be doing more because there is always more to do?
  6. Carrying the burden of unhealed wounds - sadness, unresolved tension, toxicity in relationships?
  7. Experiencing information overload?
  8. Willfully refusing to stop?

Which of these feels the most true for you? Ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you about what you’re noticing and to lead you into rest specifically related to these sources of exhaustion.

During Sabbath, there are no rules, there are no should do’s. Today, you have permission to let your body and soul have whatever it most needs to feel restored by Jesus. Below is a non-exhaustive list of suggested practices for resting during your Sabbath.

Suggested practices:

  • Go for a walk or hike
  • Stretch
  • Read a book
  • Go on retreat
  • Get into nature
  • Laugh
  • Enjoy silence and solitude
  • Switch off your phone
  • Take a long shower or bath
  • Listen to a great album
  • Day dream
  • Have a digital Sabbath
  • Have a slow morning
  • Doodle
  • Take a nap


If you are interested in exploring the possibility of taking a day or weekend retreat, we recommend checking out Ruth Hayley Barton’s book: ‘Invitation to Retreat.

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