In a few days summer will be officially here. This is a much anticipated time for many of us. The weather forecasts are full of beautiful, sunny days, and opportunities abound to catch up with old friends, visit family, plan vacations, and tackle household projects. Summer can be a busy time, with a to-do list attached to each dawning day, and a zealous effort on the part of many to use the time wisely before cold weather returns. Yet, as I anticipate summer, I am mindful of the need to create balance in my life by including time to rest and rejuvenate.
In our current society, the words “rest” and “rejuvenate” may be considered old-school. Who has time to take a break? Even while asleep we remain connected with those who are awake through technology. Today, life’s pace is faster than it has ever been, and no one, including me, wants to be left in the wake of progress. I can recall dismal days that ended with no obvious outcome, feeling the rise of guilt, that I had allowed such emptiness into my schedule. Maybe they were not empty days after all; I just did not understand. Maybe their purpose was to allow my body and mind to enjoy a respite; a part of God’s plan. Rest and rejuvenation are indeed purposeful, and my goal this summer is to enjoy them.
When I consider the value of rest and rejuvenation, I am mindful of Ecclesiastes 3:1 which states “To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” \”Turn Turn Turn\” – The Byrds
This verse does not only speak to the notion of purpose, but also to balance. Balance provides an essential dimension to life. The dictionary defines it as a state of equilibrium or emotional stability, qualities that are important for Pastoral Counselors who are charged with the mission of the psychospiritual care of clients. To maintain that emotional stability, it is recommended that we include self-care in our schedule.
How easy is it for you to relax? Do you practice self-care? In the past, I maximized every weekend, and as many evenings as possible during the summer, with tasks. In the process of doing, I forgot how to be. I forgot how to be calm; I forgot how to be mindful; I forgot how to be relaxed. I forgot how to appreciate uneventful days and simple pleasurable acts. I replaced “to be” with “to do.” Gratefully, this was brought to my attention, and I decided to change. I invite those among us who are caught up in doing, to pause, and try to practice being. Allow yourself to be still for a few minutes each day so your body and mind can recharge. Give them a chance to restore so you may create balance in your life.