Peace in the Middle East…..
Before coming to Israel, my family always questioned the safety in Israel. Assuming Israel is always at war, or a terrorist attack takes play every single day. I however reminded them that violence is all around the world and Israel is not the only place my safety should be of concern. After landing in israel the first feeling you feel is peace. It’s so ironic given the constant news media about terrorist attacks taking place in Israel. However I didn’t want to talk about peace as it relates to safety but peace as it relates to your body, spirit, and mind.
Israel is a Jewish state so therefore they observe sabbath every Friday-Saturday. I would like to add that I to keep the sabbath day back in the United States but the experience in Israel is a totally different one. Everything in Israel shuts down, in more secular cities like Haifa not all shops are shut down but most are and most buses are not available. Basically the whole country is at rest and people are actually resting and experiencing a supernatural shalom. It doesn’t even compare to the United States when we have weekends off of work but we still work and families don’t use their time to have quality time with the family. No, in the U.S. We are at a constant movement but in Israel everything is still. There is no chaos, no commotion, just stillness. There are three things I think other nations can learn from Israel by keeping a sabbath day.
- Resting is Beneficial for your Health. Resting gives your body time to re-boot. If you are use to exercising you know that your trainer always tells you take a rest day. A rest day allows you to soak up sun, get a facial, enjoy a massage, whatever you have to do to show your body some love. If you want your body to perform at its optimal level you must rest it. The whole idea of just working really hard is a bad idea, people are working their bodies to death but need to be working their bodies to rest. I know if your anything like me I pay close attention to how my skin looks and how fatigued I am everyday from the demanding life of work and school with no rest. Here in Israel I am forced to rest, I’m forced to sleep, I’m forced to take care of myself because there is a set day every week in this country for me to do so. I know most people don’t rest until they take a vacation once a year! How about trying to rest once a week! I promise it won’t kill you to do it and the things that you say are important are never more important than the health of your body. Rest is equivalent to long life. Let’s live a long life of rest.
- Resting allows Creative Ideas to flow. Now I believe everyone is creative by design. Creativity is not limited to art but includes things like business, entrepreneurship, organization, architecture, writing, filming, jewelry making, plant potting and the list goes on. The thing about creativity is that the ideas are not always flowing from ones imagination. Creative ideas come the most when one finds inspiration and in order to find inspiration your mind has to be at peace to see it. If your mind is always racing with a million checklists, a million demands, and a ton of a million fears when do you have time to be creative? I have noticed that since I am forced to rest once a week, my mind is much more clear and not cluttered with the demands that come with life. With a clear mind I can dream about my future, my purpose, my destiny. I can plan about old ideas I never gave time to because I let “busyness” get in the way. It’s so refreshing to dream again! When is the last time you had a whole day dedicated to dreaming? A whole day writing out ideas? A whole day thinking about a new novel you want to write? When? The mind is the most powerful tool a human being possess but allowing the mind to enter into a place of rest is the hardest thing for a human to conquer. I want to encourage you to FORCE your mind to experience true shalom and I guarantee you that your mind will take you to ideas you would have never had the time to think of!
- Resting allows one to Connect to family & friends. Besides resting benefiting your body and your creativity, resting benefits the special people around you. When you take time to rest you can be fully present in other people’s life rather than just experiencing limited connection with one another. Open up your schedule to have more family dinners, cocktails with friends, and enjoy some good knee-slapping laughter. Connecting with family and friends enriches your life. You are a rich man when you are surrounded by people you know and love. You only get to live life once, there are no do overs. So how about you cherish and appreciate all the family and friends around you.
I love experiencing the sabbath day once a week. Once a week I know I have to let my body rest. Once a week I know i have time to spend with my own thoughts. Once a week I know I have time to connect with family and friends. Once a week I experience supernatural shalom and nothing compares to the shalom you experience in Israel. There is plenty of peace in Israel, it’s all about perspective.