Today is my last day in the office before I leave for vacation. This will be my first full week of vacation proper since 2010. (Sure, I was unemployed for a while there, and in school for a bit more, but the former is panic while the latter is extra work.) Vacations are good things. They keep us ready for the work at hand. They clear our minds, rest our souls. They give us time to connect to family and friends. Yes, vacations are important.
Rest is important. We simply can't run continuously, can't pretend to operate at peak performance indefinitely. Unfortunately, we're just not designed that way. God seems to have designed animal life in general with a need for physical rest and human beings in particular with a need for mental rest as well. He then gave us a general pattern to follow: He rested the seventh day and commanded us to do the same, and then He gave us festivals and feasts during which time work would cease. We don't observe sabbath rest legalistically; rather, we know it's truly what's best for us. This is why we have weekends and vacations.
Jesus offers us rest if we follow him. Matthew 11:28-30 says this: "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." A rabbi's yoke is his doctrine and requirements for his disciples. Jesus says he's not like the Pharisees, heaping up mounds of impossible rules. His yoke is easy. His way leads to rest for weary souls, for those who can't keep up with pharisaic laws.
Christ offers us rest, a peace and rejuvenation of the soul. That's rest we can all use.