Layovers, limitations, and the gift of rest


Around 3:00 Sunday, all I wanted to do was go to sleep.

Yesterday, I preached twice at South Georgia Baptist Church, before conducting interviews for a video we’re working on for The Gospel Project. I had a great time, and the people were absolutely¬†wonderful.[1. And probably more polite about the quality of the message than was necessary, but I’ll take it.] But by the end of the afternoon, I was ready to drop.

Preaching is hard work. It takes a tremendous amount of energy to speak¬†for an extended period of time. It’s something I enjoy doing, but afterwards‚Ķ¬†Man, I am wrecked.

I got back to my hotel room, dropped into my bed, and passed out for a little while, while a superhero-related show was playing on my laptop. I was too tired to read. (Scandalous, I know.) For me, this is normally about the best I get when I preach anywhere. Except it being at home, not in a hotel. Because I have a regular job,¬†all my rest and recovery has to go into Sunday afternoon.¬†But today is a rare day, one where I get to enjoy a little extra rest, flying back to Nashville (while you’re reading this, most likely).

What I love about this is the chances of people wanting to make conversation with me are very low. People usually just want to take their trip in peace, not chat with the dude next to them. So I get to sit and read the book I brought with me (High Fidelity, for those wondering), as well as read my Bible a bit. Maybe I can write¬†a bit if I’m up for it. I can even take a nap if I have to.

I also have an hour and a half layover in Dallas today, so yay (I guess.)

Something that I’ve really struggled to learn is that the need for rest isn’t a weakness. It isn’t a curse. It’s a gift. A good gift from God. We don’t have limits in order to hinder our productivity. We have them so we can stop running at a crazy pace and remember that we have limits. When I’m exhausted after preaching, it’s not because¬†I’m doing something I’m not gifted for (I don’t think, anyway), it’s God’s way of reminding me that I am a limited human being.

That I need rest.

And that rest is available to me.

So I’m going to do what I’m supposed to and rest. Tuesday’s coming fast and with it, my regular routine. But for¬†today at least, I take advantage of the¬†time away from my email, texts, and phone calls, and¬†enjoy¬†this opportunity to recharge.

photo credit: Master Octa Transit Mall of Terminal 3 Changi via photopin (license)

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