I don’t understand. I did suffer clinical exhaustion, and I spent a year recovering. I’m not back to my old fighting self, but I’m making good strides.
I’m fifty-five years old. I only have forty or so years ahead of me – I need to make the most of them, not spend them ‘resting’. Relaxation is for my dotage, for when when I’m ninety-twelve.
This is my inner monologue every time I’m given the message to REST, which is every time I seek a word with the Divine, like I did this morning.
I don’t WANT to rest! I want to go play, and play hard. I don’t need to rest anymore. I’m not tired…
Except that, if I’m honest with myself, I am. I’ve worked hard. I’ve endured tragedy, strife, dreams realized and dreams lost. I’m bone tired of the struggle to survive, to thrive.
I just don’t understand what resting will gain me. More lost time? I lost so much to my husband’s death – years spent immersed in numb gel, unable to feel others, unable to feel myself, except when the strongest of emotions burrowed in. I continued to move my body in appropriate motions – smile, pat, hug. But I didn’t feel it. Seven frozen years before the thaw and flood. Emotions restored. Life renewed. I don’t want to waste any more time.
To me, rest equals boredom – hours, days, months spent doing nothing. It’s my personal definition of hell.
But perhaps that’s not what Spirit has been saying. Maybe she’s not insisting that I let my physical, mental and spiritual muscles atrophy. Maybe there’s another message, one that I’ve been missing.
I decided to research the word ‘rest’. It comes from the Old English raeste meaning rest, bed, or mental peace. In turn, raeste comes from an Old Germanic word rasta, which was a unit of measure amongst nomads. ‘After this distance, it is time to rest.’ And the word translated‘rest’ in the Matthew quote is from the greek anapauo – which means to rest, to be refreshed, soothed, or to have a fixed abode – in other words, a home.
I’ve been on a lifelong journey for home. I’ve found pieces of it in people, houses and neighborhoods. But for most of my life, I’ve felt like a nomad – a homeless spiritual wanderer. Over and over in my journals is one beseeching cry – “Where is home?”
Now it begins to make sense.The Divine isn’t asking me to be bored. She’s inviting me to stop my physical, emotional and spiritual wandering. She’s offering to lead me home.
*(Cherie’s Heretical Version)