The priority of rest

Worship services are held in the March Air Reserve Base Chapel each unit training assembly weekend. (U.S. Air Force photo/ Megan Just)

Worship services are held in the March Air Reserve Base Chapel each unit training assembly weekend. (U.S. Air Force photo/ Megan Just)

MARCH AIR RESERVE BASE, CALIF -- Abraham Lincoln once said, "Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe." Apparently, Lincoln thought the time spent for preparation and rest was more important than the time spent actually swinging the blade!

Did you know that when you compare all of the Ten Commandments word for word, more is written on the commandment concerning rest than the other nine? Go ahead; I challenge you to look it up! It seems as though God wanted to stress the importance of rest by using more words so that the message would be clear and without  misconception.

Author Steven Covey, famous for his book "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People," thought so highly of properly resting for effective living, that he made it Habit #7.

For many of us, when preparing for our day, rest is rarely given priority. It seems we are always pushing the envelope to unproductive--even dangerous--limits. A survey conducted last year by the Centers for Disease Control (http://www.cdc.gov/features/dssleep), discovered that more than one-third of the people
questioned, admitted to falling asleep unintentionally at least once during the previous month. More alarming, almost five percent said that they had been so tired that they actually fell asleep while driving!

Question: When preparing for your day, what level of importance do you place on rest? Is it high enough? A good way to assess your level of rest is by simply paying attention to some of the warning signs: repeatedly feeling rundown or drained, having difficulty focusing on your job or your studies, or nodding off--even for a moment, while at work or behind the wheel are key indicators that you may not be getting enough.

The best way to get yourself on track is to reassess your daily priorities. If you suffer from the mentioned indicators, it would probably benefit you to restructure your day and increase your allotted time for much-needed rest.

I know, I know, it won't be easy; but take it from the experts who know a thing or two about living effectively and productively...get your rest! God bless!