By: Jeremiah Vik

I’m constantly moving forward with an overwhelming sense of urgency. There’s always a project, always a deadline. Even the simple task of traveling from point A to point B is tainted by this urge to rush. I find myself flustered by the time I get to where I need to be, for no other reason than I was unable to keep up with the stringent, unrelenting schedule in my head.

Even when I’m sitting still, my brain is still pressing forward, hurrying ahead of me to the next task or meeting. If I’m detained for too long in one place, my mind gets up and leaves the room hoping my body will follow. Sound familiar?

If you’re in ministry, there’s a good chance you’ve experienced this same sensation…and it can be very tiring. Mentally? Yes. Physically? Unfortunately, yes.  Running a marathon in your head while waiting for the cashier to ring up your groceries can somehow leak energy from your body. The consequence is that the moments and people that need your energy and attention the most are starving for it.

The most serious consequence of this hurry-driven way of life is that it crowds out God.  Sure, everything you’re doing is for the sake of His Kingdom, but that’s just it. You become a "human-doing" instead of a human being.

Dr. John Ortberg once asked a mentor of his, "What do I need to do to be spiritually healthy?"  There was a long pause and then the wise, old man replied, "You must ruthlessly eliminate hurriedness from your life."

Jesus invites us, "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 11:28-30)

This is certainly not an unfamiliar invitation to those of us in ministry. The problem is, we rarely consider it our invitation.  We’re so busy inviting others into this peace-centered life Jesus offers, we forget how vital it is for our own spiritual health.

Scholars believe that the heavy load in this passage refers to the numerous stipulations the Pharisees added to the Old Testament law given through Moses. Not a far cry from the self-imposed hustle that shapes our ministry into an energy-sucking machine.

What would your life look like if you lived and served without being in a hurry?  If you slowed down and truly entered into this restful life that Jesus describes?

I've experienced the hurried life as well as moments of rest; and in my journey, I've gone back and forth many times. I have to keep reminding myself of its importance and being intentional about accepting Jesus’ invitation to rest.  Along the way, I'm learning that the transition from rushing to resting is a process that can't be hurried.

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