Devotional Personal

You Deserve a Break Today

Pink sunset over snow covered mountains

In Mark 6, Jesus has just had a couple of hard days. He had visited his home town and been rejected. He was nearly stoned to death there. Then he gets word that his cousin John has been beheaded by Herod.

He was not only grieved for the loss of his cousin, but it meant the authorities were getting closer to taking him out as well. This is why he so often told those he healed to not tell anyone who had healed them. He was trying to, “fly under the radar” as much as possible, for as long as possible.

Mark 6: 31 in the NIV says, “Then because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, ” Come with me to a quiet place by yourselves and rest.”

He makes the same invitation to us. God has uniquely gifted and qualified each one of us for ministry in our families, our churches, and our communities. Many of us have full time jobs and other work related responsibilities. Most of us still have laundry and meals to prepare. We are busy.

“We all struggle to balance our true calling with the many other responsibilities of our lives.”

Even Jesus was overwhelmed sometimes. We know he often went away alone to pray, to be alone with His Father. But He also made time to be alone and rest with those closest to Him.

So here is our challenge also. There is a time to slip away alone with God. We all need time to be still, to listen, to refresh ourselves in quietness and solitude.

Man in kayak on river

But there is also a time to gather with those closest to us, our ministry partners and friends. It can me be one friend or several. But be sure it is the people who refresh you and not those who you are mentoring.

Do you have people, or even just one friend, who refreshes you, who understands and supports the calling you believe God has placed on you? I heard it once described as your tribe. You might call it your inner circle. Jesus had many disciples, and there were many people who followed him and loved him. He had his family. But He also had an inner circle, the twelve.

“Like concentric circles, we too may have many friends, family,

and those we consistently counsel and encourage.”

Like concentric circles, we too may have many friends, family, and those who “follow us, those who consistently look to us for counsel and encouragement, but who are the people in your inner circle?

In my life, my inner circle includes my pastor’s wife who understands the challenges of leadership, my daughter who refreshes me with laughter, a long-time friend who helps to keep me grounded, a mentor who lives far away but who is my greatest cheerleader, and there are a few others besides.

Your inner circle are the people who share your vision. These are the people who concern themselves with your wellbeing. They pray for you. They counsel you if you need it. They boldly correct you or redirect you as needed. They love you for you and not just for your gifting.

When you are overwhelmed, no matter how busy you might be, find some time to be alone with God to refresh yourself.

But apart from that, consider who you would call your inner circle, your tribe. Thank God for them and then make sure you make time to spend with them.

Even Jesus needed to stop and go get a meal with a few close friends.

You can too.”

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