A Quiet Place
I’ve had some vacations that left me exhausted, especially when our kids were young. But a few years ago, I came home from a trip rested and restored. It didn’t start out that way. When my husband and I decided to do something special to celebrate our thirty-fifth anniversary, we had to postpone it. I had a book contract that required me to write 365 devotions in five months. That meant spending long days at the computer, including most weekends. But I made the deadline—barely.
As we boarded the plane for Hawaii, I stressed about my lack of preparation. It would have been nice to use self-tanner, replace my old, dorky walking shoes, and shop for summer clothes. Plus, my mind still buzzed from constantly doing math: If I get this many devotions done today, that will leave that many to do.
Our first stop was an ocean center where I stood mesmerized by a glass tank of jellyfish undulating to the rhythm of faint music. Later, as I lay on the beach looking up at slow-moving clouds and gently swaying palm trees, my spirit fully relaxed. I decided that God knows we need a nudge to slow down; after all, He put reminders above us in the sky and below us in the ocean.
Trips like that are few and far between, but I’m trying to practice that mindset. I’ve learned that when I mentally slow down and concentrate on God, He restores me—even without a beach.
When was the last time you quieted your soul before God and enjoyed the place of rest He offers you?
Dianne Neal Matthews is the author of four daily devotional books including The One Year Women of the Bible (Tyndale House). She also writes for websites and blogs (such as CBN.com and FindingGodDaily.com), contributes to compilations (including Guideposts’ 2013 Mornings with Jesus), and teaches at writers’ conferences. Visit her at www.DianneNealMatthews.com.