“In the estimation of the rabbis it was the sum of religion to be always in a bustle of activity. They depended upon some outward performance to show their superior piety. Thus they separated their souls from God, and built themselves up in self-sufficiency.
Image @ Stan Myers from GoodSalt.com
The same dangers still exist. As activity increases and men become successful in doing any work for God, there is danger of trusting to human plans and methods. There is a tendency to pray less, and to have less faith. Like the disciples, we are in danger of losing sight of our dependence on God, and seeking to make a savior of our activity. We need to look constantly to Jesus, realizing that it is His power which does the work. While we are to labor earnestly for the salvation of the lost, we must also take time for meditation, for prayer, and for the study of the word of God. Only the work accomplished with much prayer, and sanctified by the merit of Christ, will in the end prove to have been efficient for good.” — Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 362.
- The constant pressure of being on top of things, being available (physically or virtually) all the time, and trying to live up to ideals that are neither realistic nor God-given can make people sick — emotionally, physically, and spiritually. How can your church become a welcoming place for worn-out, tired people yearning for rest?
- Is it possible that we are too busy, even doing good things for God? Think about the story of Jesus and His disciples in Mark 6:30-32 and discuss its applications in your Sabbath School group.
- In 1899, a speed record had been broken. Someone had actually gone 39.24 miles per hour in a car — and lived to tell about it! Today, of course, cars go much faster than that. And the speed of the processors in our cell phones are much faster than the fastest large computers of a generation ago. And air travel is faster than it used to be, and is getting even faster. The point is that almost everything we do today is done faster than it was in the past, and yet, what? We still feel hurried and without enough rest. What should that tell us about basic human nature and why God would have made rest so important that it is one of His commandments?
- Dwell more on the idea that even in Eden, before sin, the Sabbath rest had been instituted. Besides the interesting theological implication of this truth, what should this tell us about how rest was needed even in a sinless, perfect world?