"And the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain gladness, joy, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away."

Hebrews 12:22 ESV

With three kids still at home, it’s important to me to spend time in God’s nature on Sabbath. Daily we are bombarded with electronic messages pursuing us wherever we dare carry our smartphone, iPad, laptop, etc. So, taking time to slow the digital pace, increase the literal pace, and truly experience the REST God intended can be a powerful way to recharge.

One Sabbath, a group of friends agreed to catch up for a hike that promised to be a challenge. We began with the kids bounding off on the trail like mountain goats. The adults followed at a brisk pace and chatted as we went along. It felt so good. We had been in isolation for so long that getting out and exercising our bodies, minds, and hearts was fulfilling. When we reached the trail top, there was a terrific view! Scenic vistas of mountains and trees showed the beauty God intended for all time — and from this distance, appeared unspoiled.

My mind escaped to what lies ahead for those who long for Jesus’ return. When the time of trouble comes, little bands of believers will be hidden away in remote mountainous places and praying with light encircling them in this world of darkness.1 I know daily preparation in the here and now, spiritually and physically, is imperative for our ability to stand firm in our beliefs. Today is the day to make time for physical activity and set aside time to study the Word. By memorizing Bible texts, the Holy Spirit will bring them to remembrance when we need them most. However, this comes only with practice and commitment.

In Hebrews 12, we hear a glorious reminder of the promised home awaiting us. We see from the verse that we won’t be trudging to Zion but instead singing, glad, and joyful! The heavy burdens we carry on Earth that make us sigh and experience sorrow will flee.

Call to Action

So, start your practice today. Walk in the woods, find Bible verses of encouragement, and exercise literally and physically as you look forward to the blessed hope of a heavenly home in Zion!

  1. Ellen G. White, The Great Controversy (Mountain View, California: Pacific Press Publishing Association, 1911), 635.

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