Like a runner must feel who slows down while the others pass - it was so good to slow my pace this summer. I was able to watch the world running by at a frantic pace – and not feel that I had to keep up.  We recently were given a time of Sabbatical from our ministry.  We are very blessed to work at a church that values the long term health of their staff and provides an opportunity to take a Sabbatical.   We planned some intentional time with our family, time of study and time to accomplish some projects we wanted to finish.  I wanted to share some of the lessons I learned on this Sabbatical:

One of the first things I did during this time was to go to a coffee shop and just read through the Gospels.   I saw Jesus in a different way that day.  I think I realized for the first time how difficult it must have been for Jesus to leave His throne in heaven - and come to a broken world.  He left the perfection of heaven - the place we all long to be - where there is no pain or tears or sorrow or evil - to come to a broken world.  He experienced opposition, lies, betrayal by His friends, demons, hardness of heart, anger, cruelty, death of His friends, greed, sickness and disease, accusations -   and all of the pain He went through at His trial and crucifixion. He was bound, condemned, spat on, struck, slapped, beaten, stripped of His clothes, and murdered on the cross.  He knew that He would endure all of these things on earth - and He came anyway!  As I read through the Gospels - I was gripped again by His love for me.

I realized that He experienced all of this - for me.    

All because I slowed down and spent time reading His word.  Nothing complicated…just allowing God’s word to speak to my heart.   Hebrews 4:12 says "For the Word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart."  Wow - His word is able to pierce my soul and to discern my thoughts and intentions!  His Word has so much power! 

I just have to take the time to read it.

How have you slowed down this summer?   Have you taken time to rest and read His Word?  We still have a few days of summer – take some time to rest and hear from Him through His word!  He wants to speak to you!