By: Richie McClure
The connection that humans have with nature is unparalleled. I recently
found myself on a camping trip to kick off the year that was truthfully last
minute and not something I planned myself. But as I got out into the
wilderness of Florida and life slowed down, I started to feel something I had
been seeking but not attaining: Rest.
True rest is something that is rarely found today. In fact, we are taught the
antithesis of rest in our daily lives. We are taught to deflect and distract. Go
through your apps, post a picture and watch the likes roll in, “watch” your
favorite show with your phone in your hand. These are some examples of
how you rest in culture currently. These things and many other examples do
not produce what we are seeking and actually can stress us out more. They
actually cause our brains to still be in a constantly stimulated state and do
not allow us to get the proper rest we need.
When we get stressed, we need rest, when we do not get rest, we get stressed and the cycle continues...
Don’t get me wrong, there are many ways for each individual to achieve true
rest. We are all made uniquely in our creator’s image and that is a beautiful
thing. One way that I personally achieve rest is to get outside and see His
hand in creation. The trip I took started out as a normal camping trip, but I
quickly found my pace of life slowing down. Nothing had to be planned, we
did whatever came to our minds. We had everything we needed and
nowhere to be but present. This allowed our minds to truly decompress to
where we did not even have to think, all we had to do was experience His
In Matthew 11:28 Jesus tells us “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy
laden, and I will give you rest.” He is a good, loving, gracious Father and He
wants us to be lead peaceful lives. This verse is probably the most famous
about rest, and what I love about it is that Jesus gives us clear directions on
how to get rest. Come to Him. It shows His want and longing for our hearts.
His arms are always open wide waiting for us to just come to Him no matter
where we are in our lives. And I can’t think of a better setting to come to Him
than out in His creation.
Distraction is a big cause of how we end up feeling so restless today. Not
facing our issues and instead distracting doesn’t allow us to feel the full
spectrum of feelings that we are meant to. When we can allow ourselves to
feel fully, to deal with our feelings and emotions in a healthy way and
understand them, then we can begin to know ourselves better and,