I recently finished reading Secrets From the Treadmill by Pete Briscoe and Patricia Hickman. The book spent several years on my reading pile (I picked it up during my D.Min. days at Asbury), but I decided to finally get to it when I realized I needed to manage stress better. I took it with me on vacation over the summer.
I like what the authors state early on, that the goal is not really to live a “balanced life” …
We do not argue for a life of all rest. We’re not even purporting a life of balance. We don’t believe the Bible calls us to a balanced life—try to find one biblical character who lived one. We are not to rest seven days and trust God to pay the bills. Neither are we to work three and a half days and rest three and a half. God doesn’t call us to a mathematically tidy life. God calls us to a life of imitation and rhythm. (25)
The book deals a lot with sabbath. The authors remind us, “The Sabbath was designed for us” (42).
The foundational principle of the Sabbath as far as Jesus was concerned is that it is extraordinarily flexible. It was designed for us—for me. That means I need to determine the best way for me to find rest, solitude, connection with God, and peace of mind. (42)
When we fill the gaps with more stuff and more activity, peace and creativity diminish. But …
A strange thing happens when we take some time to rest—God floods our minds with creative and Spirit-led ideas. … Prioritizing rest allows us to be a recipient of the Lord’s ministry in our lives. (83)
The authors also argue for simplicity and minimalism, stating …
When our lives, minds, souls, and schedules are full of so many fillers, we become incapable of recognizing the happiness found in minimalism. (159) … Wherever we find simplicity we also discover contentment. (160)
Prioritizing rest will always e a challenge in this life. The authors talk about living in Saturday.
Saturday represents the gap between faith and fulfillment. Saturday is the bridge between what we believe and what we will one day see at his appearing. The disciples had an advantage over us in that they physically spent three years with Jesus. We have an advantage over them in that we know Easter happened. But they had to live in Saturday until their eyes met him again face-to-face. We also must live in a Saturday’s wait until our eyes meet him face-to-face. (175-176)
So, we live in Saturday. There, we must discover God’s rest in the busyness of life!