Post written by JR Baker
As I mentioned last Sunday, Selah is a musical term which means to pause, to rest, to remember. We see it 71 times in the Psalms. Over and over again, we see this powerful statement, and then it concludes with “Selah”. There is this clear challenge, reminder, call, promise, truth, etc., and then immediately following it, is “Selah”. It’s as if God is saying to us, “Ok, listen to what was just said, and now pause, rest, and remember who I really am.” Like in Psalm 3:8, Salvation belongs to the Lord; Your blessing be upon Your people! Selah…or, again in Psalm 68:19, Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears our burden, The God who is our salvation. Selah. There is this powerful truth of God, and then the call to Selah, to pause and reflect on that clear truth.
Pausing and resting might be one of the most difficult things to do, for a lot of us. We do not have very favorable views of pausing and resting. You might say to me, “I mean, pausing requires us to stop doing, all that we have to do. It is completely counterproductive, to all of the things that need to be done, today. Resting is actually just a fancy term for being lazy. Resting? What’re we, 5? We need to grab our binky and go take a nap? Pausing and resting is not something that is gonna get me ahead in life, it’s not gonna pay the bills, it’s not gonna help me get that promotion, it’s not gonna help me take care of my family, it’s not gonna help me improve this, that or the other, it’s not gonna get the job done…whatever that job might be. Life doesn’t have time for pausing and resting.”
Well, I would like to take the time to completely disagree with all of that. Actually, I believe that a healthy amount of pausing and resting will, in fact, help you achieve all of those things that you want to achieve. I believe that a healthy rhythm to life will help you to take care of your family more effectively. I believe that learning the beauty of pausing, resting, and remembering will help you to live the life that you were designed to live. But this is something that does not come natural to us in the current Western World way of thinking that we are all overly accustomed to. It is undoubtedly going to have to be something that we intentionally choose over the norm.
In Mark 10:17 it says, “As Jesus started on his way…” I love this simple line to intro a very powerful story, because we see a very deep reality in a very surface statement. In order for Jesus to have been “started on his way…” he would have to have been stopped in the first place. It means Jesus would have been taking a break. He would have been not 24/7 on the go, rather, he would have been pausing and resting.
Jesus, God in human form, who had 3.5 years to save the world, took time to pause and rest. Period. We see Jesus often going off by himself, to pray and rest. When the storm was raging outside the boat, we see Jesus actually asleep inside. Jesus showed us a clear model of a restful lifestyle, still full of ‘paction’ (passion+action).
And let’s just take it all the way back. Let’s look at creation. God strategically and purposefully implemented rest in the fabric of creation. A lot of people look at creation like this: they see God “creating” on the first 6 days. You know, He created light and dark, He created waters, sky and land, He created vegetation, He created night and day, and on and on for 6 days. And then, He stopped creating, and rested. And this is true. That is what happened.
But I view it a little different. I feel like His implementation of rest on the 7th day was, in fact, another day of creation. I believe He created a space for rest that was just as significant and foundational to the world as all the stuff he created on the first 6 days. His choice to stop and rest was Him actually creating the 7th day, and that 7th day was for rest.
All that being said, we are choosing rest this weekend. We are choosing to pause this weekend. We are choosing to step back, slow down, take a break, and remember the goodness of God. We are choosing to Selah. And just like with God, how He created a day of rest, it is up to you to create what a day of rest looks like for you. For some, that might be relaxing with your family in a park. For some of you, it might be sitting on the couch reading a book. For some, it might be going on a hike, skiing, or heading to the gym. And for some, it might be a nice long nap on the couch after you do all of the above.
My encouragement to you, is to seek God and ask Him what rest should look like for you. You might be surprised as to what He has for you. There is no blueprint here or formula. The only mandate, is that you attempt to create a day of rest.
Love you guys. Thankful for each of you, and the call that God has on your life. My passion is to see those calls fully realized, and I believe that implementing rest into your routine is essential to making that happen. Have an amazing weekend.