Experience Rest rather than Burnout

Keep the Sabbath Day Holy

Have you set aside a day for rest?

For awhile I thought I was exempt from the command, “Keep the Sabbath day holy.”

Although the pastor at my church has been doing a series this summer on the ten commandments, the importance of keeping the Sabbath day holy didn’t hit home until a friend of mine stated, “They aren’t the ten suggestions, they are the ten commandments.”


It hit home. Since I had been working part time in my counseling job and working part time at developing my business, Sundays had become more and more a day for me to get stuff done. In other words, work. No longer were they a special, set apart day for rest. It was just another day of trying to get things done.

I’m ashamed to admit it, but I had thoughts like, “Maybe I can skip church today, that will give me more time to get the stuff done that I need to do.”

Needless to say, this kind of living was only making me feel distant from God, more anxious, overwhelmed and burned out.

As a result of being convicted in my heart that something needed to change, I resolved to be more intentional about my Sunday. I thought about what would help me to keep Sunday as a day of rest. Here’s what I came up with.

Faith – A way that I see keeping the day holy is to spend time in worship at church, spend time in the word and in prayer. Connecting with God reminds me to trust him and that he is in control. It reminds me that he designed this day for rest and worship.

Fellowship – Spending time with others at my church, my friends and family in order to build relationships and focus on others. It allows us to get caught up and enjoy each other’s company, sharing our love and lives together.

Fun – Doing something fun during the day to find enjoyment and feel rejuvenated. For instance, this past Sunday we went to the beach and surfed the waves on a boogie board. It keeps the boredom at bay and helps to keep life more interesting.

Food – I like to try out new recipes on Sunday. I enjoy cooking and trying out new things, so this is a great day to be able to do this. It keeps things fresh and allows for variety in my life. It is also a way to love and serve those in my life by doing something special for them.

The first Sunday that I made the switch, it was tough. My fingers were twitching, wanting to go to my computer and do some work. But I persevered and I filled my day with the 4 F’s and had an incredibly great day! It also helped me be centered and focused the next day when I was back to work.

By intentionally filling my Sunday with the above things, I have found myself being more connected with God, looking forward to the day, having more energy and feeling more calm and peace. It’s definitely the rest that God promises rather then the burnout I was experiencing.

The commandment God gave us for keeping the Sabbath day holy, isn’t about what we should and shouldn’t do. God gives us commands to help us, to give us freedom and to show us the right way to live. No longer am I going to think of it as a command that is just a suggestion, but rather as God’s best for me.

Do you ever struggle with this? Has your Sunday been just another day of the week? If so, what’s something you can do to be more intentional about keeping the day holy?

Judy Turnbull


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6 thoughts on “Experience Rest rather than Burnout

  1. This is something I needed to hear now, after going through my month of hell 😉 I won’t spam you with the link, but it’s in my blog – you can read the gory details if you like, but I gave up everything that was good for my soul because I just had way too much to handle. I was sick from a mysterious ailment (mysterious to me, anyway), had to study part-time (a demanding course which took a toll on me) and had to deal with lawyers and bankers because ofa sticky property issue. I was drained. Maxed out. Dying. And I didn’t have the strength to go to church or even have fellowship, let alone have a Sabbath. Every hour of the day was devoted to keeping the balls in the air.

    So yes, I needed your message. What you say about making things intentional hit a chord with me. I never did make Sabbath day intentional, more like, hey if it happens cool. Nor did I plan thingsto honour that. This is an idea that I’ll take away with me. Thanks, Judy!

    • I’m so glad that you found my post helpful Elizabeth! It can be easy to put intentional rest on the back-burner. I hope that your life starts to calm down some and pray you will find the rest you need.

  2. Judy, thank you for your honesty. I’ve been there myself – thinking if I didn’t go to church I could get more done. I will be remembering your 4F’s and putting them into practice. Good advice for my children as they go off to college and for other people, too. I love that you put Faith first because we do need to remember God is in control. It’s something to remember at the start of each day when the list of “to dos” overwhelms us.