The week after Christmas can feel like that moment after the athlete crosses the line when they go from running with beauty and strength to collapsing in an uncoordinated heap on the ground.
The first antidote is sleep and as much of it as we can get before we see in the New Year, losing yet more sleep. The yearning for sleep continues.
Then we turn to thinking about how we can get away, what our holidays might look like in the weeks and months ahead. Warm weather and no work are the next antidote to the tiredness we feel.
But how much is enough?
I grew up in a culture that esteemed efficiency and durability. Whilst it was still fashionable to be tired, nobody actually talked about how to deal with tiredness beyond sleeping and holidays. In recent years I’ve woken up to the age old Judaeo-Christian tradition of the Sabbath. Not in the sense that there’s one day when I don’t shop or don’t work or have a list of other ‘dont’s’. What I’ve begun to discover is the beauty of setting aside time to ‘rest in God’ on my Sabbath (which just happens to be a Friday as my one day of work per week clashes with the Christian Sabbath).
Just spending a bit longer on that day in worship, reading the scriptures and praying as well as spending time talking about what it means to follow Jesus is a beautiful and renewing way of life.
Am I still physically tired at the end of a demanding term? Yes. Have I managed to keep each Sabbath? No. Changes in our family circumstances have seen to that. Am I resolved to live life differently in the new year? Yes. Do I believe that keeping a Sabbath, resting in God, is vital to our sense of wellbeing as humans? Absolutely.
Now you can claim that such practices are for those set apart such as the clergy, but you’re going to struggle making a case that the ten commandments only apply to them. What I know to be true is that with every command God gives, there is a provision of how to fulfil it. I know it’s true that we are all called to live a life with Sabbath rest in its rhythm but I don’t know how you are going to live it. He does. So will you let Him show you?
I guarantee it's a lot cheaper than Mauritius in the spring.