Confession: I’ve become scheduled Susie, checklist Charlie. I study color-coated calendars and rearrange blocks of time in hopes the next day will run more smoothly than the last. This is what it takes to be me.
But for the Fourth of July I landed at my husband’s parents’ ranch. Unscheduled. Unplanned. Unbelievably good for all of us.
I kept wondering why I was so calm.
“I don’t care who you are,” Papa said one morning over steaming coffee while cows mulled in the field, “Everyone needs rejuvenation.”
Hammock strung between two trees, walks long and languid, feet-up-face-to-the-horizon, fan whirling, dirt bikes whirring, birds squirreling, flag-flapping, strewn afternoons and sweet morning rises, and we are all refreshed and made new in the play and in the quiet.
You need play. You need quiet.
You need strings of stillness — that do not include to-dos and time scheduled to a T.
Every time my brain wanted to think to-do lists and calendars, my spirit said, “Rest.” Wasn’t this a command?
So here’s my advice: whether you are taking an official “vacation” this year or not — take one.
Take the rest. Seek peace and pursue it (Psalm 34:14).
Rest is good for your weary heart, friend — for I know you are weary.
Stillness is found when you pursue it.
Look for the landscape that stills your soul, and linger there.
Listen to the crickets, the whir of the fan, the music that centers you. Chase the sunset, the dragonfly.
There are some mountains we move by waiting.
As He says in His Word, “Be still, and know that I am God” (Ps 46:10). Even in the midst of the deepest trial, we can put our feet up on the dock and trust that He will accomplish His purposes for us.
He carries you, and He is intimately familiar with all your tribulation, more than anyone around you.
To be still is to know that He is God and we are not — that although we long for solutions and answers to our pressing needs, if we just place the tangled knot of worries and fears into His hands, He’s got it.
Find your retreat: seek peace and pursue it.
Center yourself in being away from it all– and take it in like fresh clean water only He can give.
You need rest, and rest is good!
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING
Jennifer is a captivating speaker. She keeps the listener hanging in wonder of what’s coming next! Her presentation is not only absorbing, it reveals the truth of God’s power to heal a wounded spirit.
Barbara Brown, Former Stonecroft Ministries Regional Representative, San Diego, CA
“The ‘P’ word [perfection] may be the heaviest burden women bear. All the misguided things we do to attain it can keep us away from what we need most – the unconditional love of God the Father. The Girl Perfect Study Guide gives you a map to the wholeness you were created for.”
Nancy Ortberg, author and former teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church
“The Girl Perfect Study Guide shatters the lies girls and women believe and points to the ultimate truth, which really does set us free. I am confident that this study will help thousands discover a beauty, purpose, and worth that truly lasts. Thank you Jen for exposing the ‘perfect life’ and inviting girls to experience God’s ‘perfect love.'”
Allie Marie Smith
Allie Marie Smith, Founder of Wonderfully Made
One of the best testaments to what Jennifer is doing for the young girls and women of today is a comment from my eleven-year-old granddaughter: “Grammy, I want to read this book and hear her again. She’s good and I learned a lot.” This is exactly what I experienced from a grown-up perspective when I was introduced to Jennifer Strickland’s amazing story. Read it and see if you don’t get the real story from an icon model and a powerful speaker of truth.”
Thelma Wells, D.D. (Hon), President of Woman of God Ministries
Andrew Doan, Concord Christian Academy, Concord, NH
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