Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful places I’ve been in America. I’ve sat on the Nevada shore and scanned the California snow-capped mountains across the deep-blue lake. The views are outstanding during the day and magnificent as the sun sets, painting the sky with vibrant hues. And, later in the evening, the number of visible stars is greater than anywhere else I’ve been.

Spending time at Lake Tahoe always refreshes me. The crystal-clear, pine scented air helps. The retreat center I’ve stayed in doesn’t have phones, Internet capabilities, radios, or televisions. That creates a refreshing break from all the “noise” I’m used to. But, it’s short-lived. Soon after returning home, it’s like I was never gone.

Would you benefit from a break? Does spending some time at Lake Tahoe sound appealing to you? Because of the critically important and totally exhausting ministry parents and educators are privileged to fulfill, being refreshed on a regular basis is essential. How can we effectively meet children’s needs when we’re burned out and dried up? We can’t.

A few years ago, while in the restful setting of Lake Tahoe, God clearly spoke to me. He reminded me that worshiping Him, reflecting on His character and goodness, praying, and studying His Word refreshes us better than any fresh air, beautiful scenery, or Sunday afternoon naps ever could. His refreshment lasts. I sensed He wanted me spending time with Him because of Who He is and not because of what I needed to accomplish.

Before Jesus miraculously fed 5,000 people (Mark 6:35-44), “The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to Him all they had done and taught. Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, He said to them, ‘Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.’” (Mark 6:30-31)

Like the disciples, educators and parents could report many things to Jesus. We’ve done this and we’ve done that. And, many people come and go, day in and day out, don’t they? Maybe we’re craving privacy or a chance to be with friends who don’t need us. Perhaps, like Christ’s disciples who were hungry, some of our needs haven’t been met today. When I feel like I’m waiting in line to tell Jesus what I’ve done for Him (as if He doesn’t know!), I’m grateful He regularly brings the 31st verse to my mind: “Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”

Has Jesus been saying this to you lately? Are you listening? Is Jesus saying, “ , come with Me by yourself to a quiet place and get some rest.”

Let’s find our refreshment and renewal in God. Let’s read and meditate upon His Word. Let’s praise Him for His many attributes and thank Him for His never-ending grace and mercy. Let’s talk with Him in prayer. And, let’s remember to listen for His voice and respond obediently to the Holy Spirit’s leading.

A small blue wooden rocking chair is the centerpiece of my kitchen windowsill arrangement. Mark 6:31, has been etched into the back: “Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” I’m glad for the reminder. Let’s do it for ourselves and for the good of our children and students.