Prior to this past Sunday, I have never preached a message on leisure. My bad. For, as J.I. Packer has written,
“We were not made, nor are we redeemed, to live without leisure.”
No we are not. This truth is seen from the opening words and chapters in Holy Scripture where God models rest and limits our work. The creation account reveals a rhythm of work and rest that is part of the created order. We were made for this rhythm. We are called to work but there is divinely imposed limit to our work. Rest and leisure aren’t optional or merely permitted. God commands us to rest.
Rest is part of God’s good design for our lives, an expression of his generosity. Paul celebrates this expression of God’s generosity in 1 Timothy when he describes God as the one “who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment” (1 Timothy 6:17). To quote Mr. Packer again, this verse describes, “A divine generosity that requires leisure for its appreciation.”
So, how are you doing with rest and leisure? Do you have a theology of leisure? Are you appreciating the generosity of God revealed in this gift? Because if we aren’t then we aren’t experiencing rest and leisure as God designed. True rest and genuine leisure point away from themselves to God himself.
Rest and leisure draw our attention to God’s generosity and leave us freshly amazed by his grace.
Rest and leisure remind us of the gospel.
Rest and leisure are a sign of the grace of God and foretaste of heaven.
Rest and leisure provoke our adoration of God and gratefulness to God.
May your experience of rest and leisure this week not simply be a break from work but instead an experience of worship.