Caleb, Oliver and Julia had cousins visiting from Ohio. John had to work, but Beth, Sarah and Michael took the kids... including their own two, Katy and Patrick, up to the mountains...to Rocky Mountain National Park. This is one of the people they met at Lily Lake. He was a very interesting old fellow, who had lived near Lily Lake since he was nine years old.
That was in July. Today is Labor Day. That gives you some idea how behind I am with my scrapbooking.
In my inbox this morning, I found this letter from Jim Chilton, a friend of my husband...and of myself, of course. I've copied it in its entirety because it is so well written:
"Labor Day was established to celebrate the advances brought on by the Labor Movement in America. Labor unions were born in a climate of adverse conditions for laborers. Before the Labor Movement, there was a huge child labor problem, very poor working conditions where literally thousands of workers died, and virtually no rights or protection for those who worked by the hour. The first Labor Day celebration was in New York in 1882 led by a machinist union. By 1884, Labor Day became an official holiday.
Labor Day also marks the end of summer and a time of rest from our labors. How do you define rest? Sitting in a recliner in front of your television? Being up North in a cabin next to a beautiful lake? Biking, hiking, or water skiing? The New Testament definition of the word “rest” simply means to be “refreshed” even as you work.
Children understand this concept. They play until they drop, but the activity is refreshing to them. Playing hard all day is never a burden to them. We shouldn’t be childish, but maybe we should be more childlike.
Jesus’ take on rest is found at Matthew 11:28-30, “Are you tired? Worn out? Burnout out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take real rest. Walk with me and work with me – watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly” (The Message).
The Jews were a tired and frustrated people, not unlike our culture today. Daily life was hard enough, but those rascal Pharisee, made it even harder with their demands. People were not satisfied with their lives and much less with their religion. Jesus came along and gave the people a new perspective of God’s Word and how to live it. People were refreshed. Today, stress from every direction is impeding our ability to rest. Jesus offers a sustaining peace that enables us to avoid being crushed or driven to despair. The Bible is still the same. Life is still difficult, but Jesus provides a new way to see self and God’s Word will new eyes."
Thank you, Jim. We appreciate your ability to teach.