One Essential for Your 2016 Plans

Good morning! Hope you have your cup of coffee! I have mine and look forward to hearing from you!


Most of us are making plans for this coming year. Sermons. Upcoming events. Goals for our health and ministry. If I you asked me what would be a priority in your planning, I’d say, “Schedule your time off and take it!” Why did I say that? Here are three reasons…

Time off revives your Spirit. A common greeting among Orthodox Jews, even today, is “Shabbat Shalom.” It puts two Hebrew words together, “peace” and “rest.” It literally means “may you become whole during your ceasing of work.” You can’t sustain peace and wholeness without time away from ministry.

Time off renews your mind. The old saying is true, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Translation: if you aren’t taking time off you are going to be bored and boring! Creativity and passion don’t always come from trying harder, it can come of backing away and giving yourself a break.

Time off replenishes your body. When we don’t take care of our bodies, it affects everything else. Time to exercise as well as time to rest is essential. The psalmist put it this way: “It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late, and work your worried fingers to the bone. Don’t you know He enjoys giving rest to those He loves?” Psalm 127:2 (Msg)

Don’t you know He enjoys giving rest
to those He loves?
Psalm 127:2 (Msg)

Over the years of ministry, I took my time off. I did. Somewhere I got this advice and tried to heed it (still do!):

  • Divert daily (take those mini breaks);
  • Withdraw weekly (have a consistent day off); and
  • Abandon annually (use all your vacation time).

Okay, let’s mark our calendars!


Linda and I look forward to seeing many of you at Midwinter. I don’t know if you noticed, but we changed the name from “Midwinter Conference” to “Midwinter RETREAT” — our prayer is that it will be a time of enrichment and relaxation for you.

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8 Comments Add yours

  1. Rob in Florence says:

    Well put.


  2. Daniel says:

    There’s life in that message! I’m coming to see that rest is an acquired skill that comes more naturally to some than others. Thanks for encouraging us to practice.


  3. blondie70 says:

    I agree, God commanded that right from the first.


  4. Merrit H. Hearing says:

    Preach it, brother!! Such an overlooked necessity for good spiritual, mental, and physical health. One novelist frequently included in his spy novels, “Rest is a weapon.” Foster’s book on the spiritual disciplines has a stunning chapter on solitude that is life-changing.


  5. Tina Waite says:

    Thanks so much! Encouraging! 🙂


  6. Jim says:

    Easier said than done . . . but necessary. Now back to work I go 🙂


  7. Rosemary says:

    Rest in God’s presence and exercise the body I was given. My goal.


  8. mark2275 says:

    Thanks Randy i already have my vacation planned with all my grandchildren. We are heading to disneyland sea world the zoo and legoland for 2 weeks. refresh recharge relax and resume


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