“For all who have entered into God’s rest have rested from their laborers, just as God did after creating the world.”
The Importance of Rest
by Dr. Chasity Riddick
You can’t always go 100 miles per hour and expect never to break down. Society can make you feel like if you are not busy, you are not doing enough. Oftentimes, society perceives rest as being lazy. Let’s face it we are quick to charge our phones on a daily basis, sometimes more than once a day. But, we struggle to take time to rest and recharge our bodies and our minds. The truth is if we do not rest and recharge, we can not be the servants the lord has created us to be.
When we rest, the body has the ability to rebuild, reconnect, renew, and rewire mentally, physically, and spiritually. Engaging in the proper rest can also increase productivity and creativity and decrease burnout. The world has presented us with many challenges in the past few years, and many of us could be simply surviving in burnout. Burnout is a response to ongoing stress. It contributes to feeling emotionally and physically drained (Morgenstern 2023). One that has constant fatigue, has the inability to keep up with life’s demands, and feels emotionally numb might be suffering from burnout.
You might be thinking, isn’t the sleep I get at night enough rest? The answer is no, there are actually four types of rest it is important to focus on. Today, I want you to reflect on the following types of rest: physical, mental, spiritual, and social rest. Ask yourself, do I make time for intentional rest that includes all four types? Before you can do that, you might need to first think about what the difference is between the types of rest. Let’s discuss it!
Physical rest is exactly how it reads, the act of resting the body. This could be getting a full night’s rest, taking a nap throughout the day, sitting and enjoying a cup of tea, or simply sitting in stillness. Incorporating small 5-10 minute breaks in your day can improve your energy levels.
Your brain is such a powerful and complex organ. However, as powerful as it is, it needs rest too. An overworked brain can impact the ability to function at its capacity. Mental rest is taking time out to focus on another topic for a small period of time. If you are working on a project and you start to zone out and lose focus, consider pausing and shifting your focus to something else. Perhaps something that requires less thinking and/or focus. You can always go back to the project. Taking that break could provide you a renewed energy.
There are many ways to practice spiritual rest. Prayer, meditation, and reflection help you with your spiritual rest. You could do this could be between meetings, while driving the kids to their after-school activities, or at the beginning and/or end of the day. Engaging in spiritual rest can help you to hear God clearer and engage in what he is asking you to engage in.
There are so many benefits to social interaction. It can improve your mental health; it helps to keep you stimulated and intellectually challenged. Social rest is the pursuit of connecting with individuals that can encourage, motivate and support you in a positive manner. It is amazing how a simple phone call with a loved one can help us to feel better and make us feel less overwhelmed about life.
If you are thinking, “well, I am a social butterfly I do not need to practice social rest”, sometimes social rest is taking a break from being social. Social rest is great, but it must be balanced with spiritual, physical, and mental rest.
Each type of rest is important. There is not one type of rest that is more important than the other. As a human being, we need to engage in physical, spiritual, mental, and social rest. I am sure you do better at one type of rest than the others. Challenge yourself to become more well-rounded in practicing all types of rest. You don’t need a lot of time to rest, but you do need to make time to rest.
“So there is a special rest still waiting for the people of God.”
Morgenstern, J. (2023). The power of rest: increase your productivity and reduce burnout retrieved from