Feb 18, 2011

Have You Unstrung Your Bow?

The “Energizer Bunny” is held up as a model for us to emulate because he is able to keep going and going and going… But we are not Energizer Bunnies; we are NOT made to keep going and going and going. We are made to have periods of rest in our lives on a daily basis. A time to “unstring our bows”.

If we don’t take time to rest, a more serious affect takes place on our lives than not being able to keep going and going and going. The potential for damage to our whole system is as real as keeping an archery bow constantly strung.

In archery, long bows and recurve bows made from wood– especially those made long ago need to be occasionally unstrung. Leaving this kind of bow strung for long periods subjected the wood to too much stress and would often crack or twist the limbs. 

This would cause the bow to either shoot arrows inaccurately or eventually cause the limb to fail altogether. To an archer, this could literally be a matter of life and death because the failure would occur when the bow was being drawn back – the precise time the archer needed it.

Modern bows of today are made of machined aluminum and carbon fiber and are immune to any issues that come from leaving stress and tension on the limbs, thus don’t require unstringing.

People THINK that they are like the modern bows of today and thus don’t require being “unstrung”; but we are not; we are actually more like the old wooden bows. With all of our modern medicines and health practices, we seem to be less healthy than people were 100 years ago. The hustle and bustle of our modern lives has the potential of us living in a constant state of great stress; unable to handle all that life throws at us.

That is why we all need to take time to rest; time to unstring our bows. Jesus prescribed time off for His disciples after they had returned from a prolonged period of ministry (Mark 6:30-32).

God set a pattern for us when He rested from all His work. "Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made." (Gen.2:3).

God is trying to tell us something that is counterintuitive to our modern thinking: To be stronger we need to rest. In Isaiah 30:15 “For thus says the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel: “In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and confidence shall be your strength. But you would not”. 

In Hebrews 4, the writer talks in the whole chapter about the value in rest and the value of entering to this gift of rest provided by God to us. "There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. 10 For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His. 11 Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience." (Hebrews 4:9-11)

Shouldn’t we take God seriously concerning rest? Start by setting aside a special time to relax physically and renew yourself emotionally and spiritually. You will be at your best for the Lord if you have taken time to unstring your bow.

Jesus is calling out to you today: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28

"Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved."

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