OK, I will try to be as concise as possible but sometimes a preamble is necessary. As many of you know or have suspected, I come to Life Coaching from a Biblical perspective. I am a gentile, New Testament Christian, under grace not law, believing that Christ fulfilled the Law of Moses in Himself. I also believe that while the Torah, the Old Testament Law, no longer bears the weight of law for Christians, it still embodies many truths about how believers are to conduct themselves in the world to better live in harmony with God.
This whole business of lying fallow aligns squarely with the law of remembering the Sabbath, one day of rest in seven. It also ties directly into the Old Testament law that fields were to lay fallow every seventh year, a year of rest for the land, and every 50th year they were not only left fallow but were all returned to the tribes and families to whom they were originally assigned. This, by the way, is not an example of any form of socialism or communism but a function of the sovereignty of God, all things are ultimately His, He assigns ownership and we are to be faithful stewards of them.
From the time Moses gave the Law, fast forward 400 plus years to 586 B.C. The Southern Kingdom of Israel is taken into captivity in Babylon. The term of the captivity, 70 yrs., is determined by the number of years that Israel failed to allow the fields go fallow or observe the Jubilee (II Chronicles 36:21). All of this illustrates how serious God is about our need for rest.
There is physiological basis for the concept of rest as well. Most athletes are aware that one can over train. The most typical result is that an injury occurs and, surprise, surprise, the athlete has to take time off to recover. I listened to a talk by a coach of elite athletes, military, and LEO who made the point that just as there must be an exhale to every inhale so there must be rest and time to recover at regular intervals. He maintained that much of the chronic diseases we see now are result from ignoring the need to truly rest, to lie fallow. Very forcefully he told us, you can rest now or you can keep pushing till you come down with anything from a cold to cancer.
I regularly point out that life is cyclical and this is one key way in which I need to acknowledge the true nature of life as a human on this planet. I need rest and recuperation. What I don’t allow for my body will make me allow for. Just like old Israel, I can ignore God’s design for life but at some point He will stop me and then I will pay the price for my pride and hubris.
The great news is that I can choose to change. Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not saying it will be easy, it won’t. For most it will involve a nearly complete restructuring of our lives. I’m saying it is necessary if we hope to enjoy life as God envisioned it for us. I’m saying it’s worth it.