Summary: Sermon looking at the Sabbath rest of God.
“A Promised Rest”
One of the most important and commonly neglected area of our overall health is rest. Rest is essential to good health. And while it won’t provide immunity from illness and disease, it will thwart and slow down some of the more serious physical, emotional, and spiritual problems we face in our modern, no holds barred, dog-eat-dog world.
Medical science even agrees that those who get regular and adequate rest are more likely not to get sick as compared to those who burn the midnight oil. Maybe we can say that those who burn the candle at both ends aren’t as bright as they think.
A man complained to his doctor that he felt burnt out and tired. The doctor, however, couldn’t find anything medically wrong, and so he asked the man to write down what he might be doing that would contribute to his tiredness.
After listing out five things, the doctor took the list, studied it, and after a few moments wrote out his prescription. He said, “Don’t do these five things,” and listed what the man had written down.
Now, if modern medicine could bottle rest, or put it in pill form, it would be the hottest and most profitable drug on the market.
But if we want to reap the benefits of rest and have a much healthier life and life style, we have to actually slow down and take the time that is needed to rest.
Benefits of Rest
1. Improved Memory and Cognitive Skills
Improved memory and cognitive skills are just one of the many benefits of rest, but a lack proper rest can lead to a lack of concentration and inability to retain information.
Contrary to popular opinion, our minds don’t shut down when we sleep; rather it continues to process the information of the day, which allows us to perform better the following day.
So the saying we have to shut down our minds before we go to sleep is unrealistic. Instead we have to start thinking on those things that will enhance our tomorrows.
The Bible tells us what these things are.
“Whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things” (Philippians 4:9 NKJV).
2. Maintain a Healthy Weight and Life Style
Adequate sleep and rest releases into the human body hormones that control our appetite, but also when we’re asleep we’re not shoving food into our faces. Further, when we’re overly tired we don’t have the energy to exercise and cook healthy meals. Instead it’s drive through time and our favorite fast food restaurant.
The less sleep we get the hungrier we become and we crave the more high-fat and even higher calorie foods, like ice crème, or chips and dip.
Adequate rest, therefore, will improve a person’s overall health and enhance a healthy and productive life style.
3. Reduce Stress and Increase Heart Health
Being well rested reduces a person’s stress levels, thus improving heart health. Rest brings a person’s blood pressure under control and significantly reducing heart related issues and disease.
Lack of proper rest, however, seriously ups stress levels making a person more susceptible to heart attack and other heart problem. Research favors then greater rest for a healther heart.
Simply put, regular rest will help reduce stress and help the heart function properly and thus again allowing for a longer and more productive life.
4. Fight Emotional Letdowns
Lack of proper rest brings on a greater chance of the dreaded “D’s.” These are, despair, discouragement, disappointment, despondency, disillusionment, distress, disarray, dejection, and the most dreaded “D” of them all, depression.
Getting enough rest helps decrease the wild mood swings that result in overall anxiety. The more rest a person gets the more emotionally stable they become. And while it won’t guarantee a life without problems, it will help us stay more level headed when things don’t go our way.
5. Less Pain
Chronic and acute pain is lessened when someone gets adequate rest and gets enough sleep. Studies have actually shown a relationship between a lack of sleep and lowering a person’s threshold for pain.
And while being in pain makes it harder to get proper rest, research has found that getting a good night sleep can be an effective pain supplement.
To conclude this section on the benefits of rest, I think it’s safe to say that with proper rest we’ll live longer and healthier lives. So instead of ignoring our need to rest, we should embrace it and move toward the life God has set before us.
Now, in all these various studies they have concluded that people need to take a day of rest every week from life’s hectic schedule.