How do I respond when my rest is interrupted? Honestly? Usually I'm irritated, frustrated, annoyed, and super inconvenienced. Mostly because of babies. So many babies all the time in my face and in my space interrupting my time with their wants and needs.
But then there's Jesus. Legitimately tired from constant ministry and supernatural transfigurations on holy mountains, and all He wants is to debrief and relax with His friends. But then FIVE THOUSAND men (and who knows how many women and children) descend upon Him in His moment of rest, bringing their needs and expectations before Him, and how does He respond?
He welcomes them with kindness and compassion. He meets their needs in every way, even feeding them all miraculously with a just few loaves and fish. He isn't put out or reluctantly responding from some sense of obligation. He willingly engages them in their need because He knows time is short. This opportunity would pass and His primary purpose was to demonstrate the Father's heart to the people. "Let them come. They matter to Me."
If Jesus receives them—receives me—then what is my response to them? To my multitude (or thousands of babies)? If Jesus is the reflection of the Father, and I am a reflection of Jesus, then my response should be His: "Come. You matter."
When I'm home with my children. When I'm out and in a hurry. When a friend needs a conversation or a helping hand. "Come. You matter."
Jesus was never inconvenienced by the sincere needs and desires of the multitude, or the individual for that matter. Even in His moment of greatest agony, He extended kindness and grace to the thief suffering on the cross beside Him.
People matter more than any task or preoccupation. Rest is important, of course, but let's not roll our eyes at opportunities when they feel like interruptions. This is what we signed up for as Christ-followers. Besides, there's greater fulfillment in the exchange of my rest for their redemption every time. It's always worth it.