Finding Rest in Friendship and Slowing Down

    When I first started making plans for Spring Break, I realized my family and I did not have a break at the same time. This break would not be an opportunity to pack up and vacate for even a few days. I was not overly disappointed, however, because hubby and I have some special summer plans that are developing.
     So I immersed myself in Plan B with a cleaning schedule to rival the power of the "white tornado." (For all of you youngsters out there, Ajax ran a commercial in the 1970s about its scouring power equaling that of a white tornado.) For one week, I would accomplish the unlikely if not impossible in the field of cleaning. Not only would I do the usual spring cleaning: dusting blinds, vacuuming draperies, dusting fans and ceiling lights, washing baseboards, etc.,  but I would clean out our bedroom closet and reline the kitchen pantry as well.
     Just thinking about all that work, now that spring break is in its twilight hours, leaves me exhausted. No wonder I lacked enthusiasm for this school vacation and was dreading two more months of work until summer.
     As I flipped open my planner to schedule the chores for each day, I felt the Holy Spirit urge me to write down at the head of my weekly planner: "Spend the week with friends." 

     Well, that was luxury, I thought. But I could feel the pull in my heart to make room for that face to face with some friends amidst the face to dirt that I had planned.
     I wrote my list of tasks, divided the work into days, and then realized that it really would be okay if I did not accomplish everything on my list. Picking up the phone, I called a friend to discuss some details for an event, when I discovered she suddenly had some free time in her schedule that week. We made luncheon plans for our favorite tea house.

     From the moment I pulled my van into the tea house parking lot, I could feel the relaxation and emotional release seep into my pores~slowly. Slowly was the key. With every step, every glance, my hurried spirit uncoiled another link of a tightly wound spring. Roses greeted us at the hostess desk and my eyes drunk in the delicate touches surrounding me~dainty patterned teacups, white crocheted table coverings, flowing floor length pink tablecloths, silk floral centerpieces whispering a welcome, and a white porcelain plaque with scrolled handwriting inviting us to recline at the table. We asked our hostess if we could dine on the floral lined patio in the still pleasant spring desert air.

     Here in this "girly heaven," as my friend and I nicknamed the tea house, I experienced the emotional rest and true peace the Lord had planned for my spring break. Face to face, in friendship, we chatted and laughed. We allowed time to pass, never looking at our watches, as we soaked up the beauty of a softly cascading waterfall and meandering stream  bordered by fuchsia and purple petunias.

     I could not tell you what we talked about, just that our already precious friendship grew even deeper that day as the Holy Spirit delighted us with refreshment, joy, relaxation, and the beauty of the Lord's creation. If I had cleaned every nook and cranny of our home, checked off every task on my list as done, I would not have experienced the peace and sense of true accomplishment that I knew that day in the light of our friendship shared over tea amongst God's beauty.
     I have found that rest does not come from having a completed "to do list" but from a lasting friendship with those who love the Lord.

    "Do not forsake your own friend or your father's friend;" Proverbs 27:10 NASB
     "A friend is--a push when you've stopped; a word when you're lonely; a guide when you're searching; a smile when you're sad; a song when you're glad." Charlie "T" Jones
     And a rest when you're overburdened.

     Praying that you find His true rest for you this day.

From My Heart to Yours,

     Linking with Restoring Emotional Rest at Faith Barista
  and Slow Down-Fast at Ann Kroeker's


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