A few weeks ago, I wrote about the wisdom we can glean from, well . . . a dog. Specifically, our sweet girl who unexpectedly passed away at the beginning of January. So far, we’ve talked about the importance of eating and playing.

And so the last lesson we learn from Ellie Rose the Wonderdog is . . .

Rest is not optional.

When life gets crazy and overscheduled, the first thing to go is self-care. Anyone else with me on this one?

I stay up too late, get up too early and find myself harried, haughty and helpless.

At the end of my energy rope, I fall to the pits of exhaustion and when we’re exhausted, we are most vulnerable.

Exhaustion is a breeding ground for ungratefulness, unfaithfulness and unforgiveness.

Tired Ellie 1

No good fruit ever blooms from exhaustion.

So why, when it’s even more critical to prioritize taking care of myself, does it become the lowest priority?

Why do I ignore the gentle tugs of my weary soul to just stop and read for a while? Or take a nap?

Or just say no?

We live in a world that values busy and I don’t know about you, but I’m over it.

Recently, my children’s school sponsored a parenting seminar led by Dr. Steven Scheibner. Dr. Scheibner has an incredible story.

As a pilot for American Airlines, he was scheduled to fly one of the planes that was forced into the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001.

However, at the last minute, Dr. Scheibner was bumped and assigned to a different flight.

Realizing he was now on borrowed time and was still here for a reason, Dr. Scheibner now travels and shares the importance of building the character of our children – and ourselves. He’s also a committed follower of Jesus. I’m not sure how you could experience what he’s experienced and not be.

There was so much said that struck a chord with me; however, this piece of advice made me want to stand-up and wave my fist and proclaim an amen . . .

“Every family should have at least one night a week when they say, “What do you want to do tonight? We have nothing scheduled.”


That’s the profound reaction I had. Just yes. Because . . .

When we over-schedule, we overwhelm.

When we constantly rush, we constantly hush.

When we fail to listen, it’s beauty we’re missin’.

Ellie winks

(She winks because she knows so many good secrets to a happy life…)

Rest is not optional – it’s critical.

Rest well, friends. Prioritize self-care and teach your children to do the same.

You’re welcome. (And I need to take my own advice.)

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” – Matthew 11:28-30


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