Wrote about “rest” on the night I helped my daughter move into her college dorm:
Not sure it’s the best night to be writing about “rest” since my plantar fasciitis issues are acting up and it’s been a long day of nothing resembling rest. The word “rest” is itself restful for me. It brings up thoughts of peace, coziness, pillows, sanctity — although, at the same time, it also has this little corner of annoying guilt. We talk about appropriate rest as a healthy necessity in our culture at large – it’s even an often written about scriptural charge. Yet our “mile-a-minute” world doesn’t actually value it. In fact it will label people as “weak” or “lazy” if you’re the type that likes to sleep in in the morning, or gets more than the allotted 6.5-7 hours. You are only allowed the bare minimum of the recommended amount without judgment.
This is an area I could definitely work on. Finding opportunities for both high quality rest and frivolous rest. Individual rest and relational rest (in the presence and company of others). Sleep rest and contemplative rest. Breathing deeply type of rest. Sabbath type of rest (both within the ritualistic weekly ritual of attending church) and other times sprinkled within the week that have nothing to do with a church building. Rest for my body… rest for my mind… rest from certain roles… rest for my soul.
Natasha Helfer Parker, LCMFT, CST can be reached at natashaparker.org and runs an online practice, Symmetry Solutions, which focuses on helping families and individuals with faith concerns, sexuality and mental health. She hosts the Mormon Mental Health and Mormon Sex Info Podcasts, writes a regular column for Sunstone Magazine and is the current president of the Mormon Mental Health Association. She has over 20 years of experience working with primarily an LDS/Mormon clientele.