Reflections by Dr. Teston
A Fellowship Christian School Blog


Give It a Rest

Dear Fellowship Families,

Have you ever told someone to "give it a rest!"? Or perhaps someone said that to you before? Usually, that statement conveys a point of tension or conflict and we simply want the other person to "let it go." This past week, I had to encourage myself to rethink and reframe what it might mean to give it a rest, with the it being my mind.  

Do you find yourselves easily distracted and burdened by the noise of this world and the cultural dynamics we face as Jesus followers? Does it seem as though life is out of control and peace is elusive? Is it hard to find a rationale for yourselves, much less a reasonable explanation for your children's questions? I think we'd all agree that these past two years have been challenging on so many levels, and we've wished we could push the "stop" and "rewind" buttons in order to go back to some sense of normalcy. But then, again, wouldn't we say there have been many positive benefits from what we've been through? We have learned to value relationships and resources we may have previously taken for granted. Our perspectives and beliefs have been scrutinized forcing us to analyze the reasons why we believe and behave as we do. And that's a good thing.

Recently, I made a list of situations that were bothering me as I couldn't get them off my mind, and my prayer for resolution seemed to be unanswered. Typically, I'm able to think my way through a matter and land on a reasoned perspective - I am practiced at knowing what to do to refresh my mind. For those who enjoy personality and strength assessments, mine is described as a deep thinker, internal processor, ESTJ, peacemaker, and blue/green. When I'm wrestling through challenges, usually, a fresh perspective comes when I pray, listen to podcasts or sermons, have meaningful conversations, go for a walk, or get a good night's rest.  

The steps that I typically take are only effective through the foundation of God's word. As my burdens seemed to be getting heavier, I was reminded of what Paul wrote to the church in Colossae: 

"Since then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things." (Colossians 3:1-2)

And to the church in Rome: 

"And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect." (Romans 12:1-2).  

This year's theme has been "dwell," and our key verse is Philippians 4:8:

"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise."

2 Corinthians 10:3-5 reminds us of the battle for our minds:

"For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ."

These reminders were what I needed to give "it" (my mind) a rest. Focusing on what's eternal and of significance to our Father provided the perspective and refreshment I needed to reorient my thinking and bring clarity to those things that were bothering me. Keeping the eternal in mind as we live our earthly lives.  

It is vital that the steps we take to give our minds a rest are focused on the truths of God's word and His attributes.

Finding rest in Him,

Dr. Kathryn M. Teston

Head of School

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       Dr. Kathryn M. Teston