One of the wonderful benefits of laptops is the luxury of typing while in bed. Today I’m in Reading, PA at a little hotel (cheapest one with a AAA discount!), taking a Jubilee weekend with my husband. The Bible defines a Jubilee year as a year of rest and returning. . . for example, commenting on when “enslaving” fellow Israelites because of their debts . . . “They are to be treated as hired workers or temporary residents among you; they are to work for you until theYear of Jubilee” (Leviticus 25:40). In the Year of Jubilee (every 50th year), the land was given rest just as during a Sabbath year (every 7 years) as well as property being returned to original owners. Israelites were given their freedom again.
The concept of resting and reconnecting is a particularly important one for my husband and I. Currently as we both have ministries/occupations that require work on Sundays (medical, cooking at a local retirement community), as well as forward-thinking (missionary mercy ministries) that will require work on Sundays, we are thoughtfully considering the many times God instructs His people to take a rest. There is also the additional aspect of needing a strong marriage to minister to people with (and despite the media’s suggestions, this also takes quite a bit of time and energy!).
So, we are having a Jubilee weekend. It’s simply a weekend to rest. We have spent the days in a hotel, quite literally sleeping and “lounging around”. Last night we ventured out for a lovely dinner at a nearby restaurant (had creme brulee for the first time!). Initially I thought this might be a weekend of spiritual refreshment (you know, more time to pray and read God’s Word) or of marriage building (long talks and sweet times with the hubby!), but although it is both of those, it isn’t being accomplished in those ways. We are resting. That is all. And that is quite enough.
God knew when He built patterns of resting for mortal man (as well as the Israelite nation), that this was a NEED of ours. He designed us to need 8 or so hours of sleep a night. And at least 1 day a week of rest. Not to mention a few “holidays” a year which included times of rest. Every 7th year was a Sabbath year where the agrarian society was only to eat “what grew by itself”, while every 50th year was a special resting year. When these rests were ignored, the entire Israelite nation was deported, so that the land could receive the rests that God alloted for it.
I would encourage you as a individual or a couple or a family to ponder how you are resting. Take the time to rest and be renewed by the God who designed you to need that rest. Plan for a Jubilee day or a weekend. Return refreshed and ready to serve once more!