The Rhythm of the Christian Life

John Koedyker

Read: Mark 6:30-34

Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while. (v. 31)

The words “Come Ye Yourselves Apart And Rest-A-While” have been blazed in my memory since childhood. These words were on a sign that greeted us as we drove into Cedar Lake Bible Conference Grounds in northwest Indiana. About 35 miles from Chicago, it offered a great summer getaway from the busyness of city life. Rest and recreation, plus spiritual refreshment from noted Bible teachers, made it a great summer vacation spot.

Jesus would have loved Cedar Lake. It would have been the type of place he desired for his disciples for rest. So many people were coming and going, our text tells us, that Jesus and his followers were not even able to eat. They needed to get away from the crowd and enjoy some peace and quiet. Several years ago, I read that 41 percent of American workers take no vacation from work (U.S. Travel Association). Although this may sound admirable, it is also true that no time off can lead to tons of stress and eventual burnout. Jesus knew this, so he sends his disciples off for some time away. Studies have confirmed what Jesus recommends: workers who take time off come back refreshed, energized, and more productive.

And although the rest they desired was preempted, it is noteworthy that Jesus could not turn people away. Because of his great compassion he did not, nor will he ever, turn us away.

—John Koedyker

Prayer: Help us, Lord, to put aside our work from time to time and rest in you. Amen.