In A Nutshell | June 11, 2021

Take Time to Rest, Relax, and Reflect This Summer

Maybe it’s my age, but people’s driving habits are getting on my nerves more than ever before.

A few weeks ago, an SUV was tailgating me all the way down Route 585. When we got to the traffic light in Smithville — the county’s most well-known speed trap at just 25 miles per hour — the SUV swerved around me and passed me on the right side. I thought it was impossible to pass anyone in Smithville, and I wouldn’t have believed it, had I not seen it with my own eyes.

Surely an officer from Smithville Police Department would pursue the SUV, pull it over, and levy a heavy fine — or so I thought — but there were no police cruisers to be found. The SUV then sped off in the distance at a rate of speed that must have exceeded 75 miles per hour. I wondered to myself where they were going in such a hurry, and concluded, that it was probably nowhere in particular.

Why is it that we are speeding through life at an increasingly accelerated pace? What’s the hurry? It seems like the faster we go, the less we accomplish and the less enjoyable life becomes.

In 2016, we lost a young and talented professor at The College of Wooster when she was rammed broadside at the intersection of Highland and Burbank by a car traveling more than 80 miles per hour. She had just gone to Buehler’s to purchase one final item for her daughter’s birthday party, which was the next day. The accident occurred less than a quarter mile from her home. Imagine the horror for her family and the anguish of knowing that there would be no more birthday parties with Mom.

I’m probably as guilty as anyone of rushing through life. Somehow, I think the faster I go, the more I will get done, but the reality is that I usually squander the free time I have created and wind up getting less done.

The value of rest, relaxation, and reflection is undeniably therapeutic. So, as we enter into summer, I wonder if we might be intentional about slowing down our pace of life, taking a few minutes to sit beneath a shady tree or lie next to a peaceful body of water as described in the 23rd Psalm when the Lord “maketh [us] to lie down in green pastures: and leadeth [us] beside the still waters.” Through this process, “He restoreth [our] soul [and] he leadeth [us] in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” Comforting Scripture to be sure, and there is plenty more where that came from. In the
11th chapter of the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus said, “Come to me, you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” In Psalm 91, we are told that “Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.”

Summer is here, so why not make a concerted effort to slow down, cut back on your hectic schedule, and truly keep the Sabbath pure and holy? I wonder how much our quality of life will change for the better? I guess we won’t know until we try.

Oh, and if you’re looking for a peaceful spot, why not consider our new Serenity Garden? It is beautiful, especially at dusk when the lights illuminate the cross. While there, I’ll bet that all will be well with your soul.

Until We Meet Again, Be Blessed! – Pastor John

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