In a world that is constantly buzzing with activity, where we are bombarded with notifications, deadlines, and the relentless pursuit of success, it’s easy to find ourselves feeling overwhelmed and drained. We live in an era where being “plugged in” is the norm, and the idea of disconnecting seems foreign, if not impossible. However, perhaps now more than ever, we need to recognize the importance of taking time out to recharge.

When an electronic device stops functioning correctly – the first thing one tries is to unplug it, then plug it back in again.

I read in an article the other day written by Karl Vaters, where he writes there is a reason why “smart” devices work in this way and not non-computerised electrical items like a lamp, toaster or fan. Although, I have to confess if anything stops working my first go to is to unplug and then plug it back in again.

Apparently, computers are programmed so that when powered up, the first thing it does is run through a diagnosis of all its essential functions. If anything is out of sorts – it fixes itself.  How clever! The article goes on to say that so do we… 😊 God designed us to do the same thing – many eons before computer programmers did it.

We need to regularly unplug, disconnect and lay low. Then, when we re-enter the world of work, we have a greater ability to fix ourselves. Every year at this time my unplugging from the world is to head off to Makhanda, formerly known as Grahamstown, for the Arts Festival. To spend days and nights going from one show to the next, grabbing a bite and discussing what we have seen or marveling at the creative wonders of the many artists on show is a real joy and rest for me.

In computer talk – rest is not a bug, it is a feature. Unfortunately, many of us do not rest enough. We tell ourselves that when we are tired we will rest – but truthfully, often we have no idea how tired we really are. Exhaustion sets in from constantly being on the go, in thought and activity. We don’t get enough sleep – we spend way too much time inside a “digital space” than we should and less time in prayer and time with God.

Too much of this results in our device, our body, mind and soul, becoming depleted and in need of recharging. The Grahamstown Arts Festival can assist in recharging, but the ultimate recharger is Jesus. Listen to the invitation he extends to all who are weary and burdened, saying, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28, NIV). I love the Message paraphrase of this verse – Jesus said, “Walk with me and work with me – watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

These words hold profound wisdom and speak directly to the struggles we face in our lives. Jesus calls us to come to Him and find rest in His presence. This is not a fleeting rest, but a deep and abiding rest that restores and rejuvenates our souls. Jesus promises that as we walk with Him, we will find rest not only for our bodies but also for our souls.

Taking time out to unplug and find solace in the restful embrace of Jesus is not a luxury, it is a necessity for our well-being. It is in these moments of intentional rest and reflection that we can hear His gentle voice, gain clarity, and find renewed strength to face the challenges of life. Just as our electronic devices need to be charged to function optimally, so do our bodies, minds, and souls.

Unplugging allows us to create space for solitude, silence, and stillness—essential elements that foster spiritual growth and enable us to connect with God on a deeper level. It is in these moments of disconnection from the noise and distractions of the world that we can experience a true sense of peace and find ourselves replenished.

So, how do we unplug and find this restful embrace? It starts with setting boundaries and carving out intentional time for rest. It may mean taking a digital detox, scheduling regular moments of solitude and prayer, or simply engaging in activities that bring us joy and help us disconnect from the demands of life.

Let us heed the words of Jesus and embrace the invitation to find rest in Him. In our quest for success, productivity, and achievement, may we never forget the importance of rest and rejuvenation. As we unplug from the chaos of the world, we allow ourselves to be refueled by the One who promises to give us rest, and in His rest, we find the strength to carry on.

So, dear friends, unplug. Take the time to recharge and rest in the embrace of Jesus. As you do so, may you discover a renewed sense of peace, purpose, and joy that surpasses all understanding.

Much love