I’m sure that you have heard of being OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), but have you ever heard of OPD (Obsessive Productive Disorder)? I haven’t either, and I did do a Google search before I started to make my comments to find out if I was just ignorant. No doubt, I still have some level of ignorance as to the psychological profile of the type of person I am describing, but overall it is the type of individual that sees no value in rest or recreation, because they see it as unproductive. Okay, maybe more common terms rather than OPD, would be Type A Personality, or Workaholic.
I don’t often wax eloquent or profound when I speak, but not long ago when a gentleman apologetically told me that he hadn’t been doing much, just resting. I responded that sometimes resting is the most productive thing you can do. Then I had to stop and think about what I said and whether I really believed it or not. I have to settle on the fact that with the agreement of the scriptures it really is true. I am usually persuaded more by the title of the book authored by Tim Hansel, “When I Relax I Feel Guilty.”
Look at some of the Biblical heavy hitters that were all in favor of rest. How about God himself? After having created the heavens and the earth and all contained in them, he rested. How about Jesus? Not only for himself, but he encourage his disciples to draw away to a lonely place for rest even when the crowds were pressing them for more miracles. Listen to the words of Jesus in Mark 6:31 – 32, “And He said* to them, ‘Come away by yourselves to a secluded place and rest a while.’ (For there were many people coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat.) They went away in the boat to a secluded place by themselves.”
The need among the people was great, but Jesus knew when it was time to rest. Rest is so valuable that God even established it in the Ten Commandments. Work six days and rest the seventh (see Exodus 20:9-10).
So if any of you reading this suffer from OPD – and I’m not talking about the Office of Public Defense – that is another whole syndrome – know that God has established times when the most productive thing you can do is rest. So work, and then rest and restore. Create, and then recreate. And don’t feel guilty when you rest. Sometimes it is the most productive thing you can do.