Sacred Rest {Book Review}

Sacred Rest

BY Saundra Dalton-Smith

Find it on:

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First Person • One Point of View • Nonfiction • 210 Pages

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Back Cover Blurb:

Staying busy is easy. Staying well rested-now there’s a challenge.
How can you keep your energy, happiness, creativity, and relationships fresh and thriving in the midst of never-ending family demands, career pressures, and the stress of everyday life? In SACRED REST, Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith, a board-certified internal medicine doctor, reveals why rest can no longer remain optional.
Dr. Dalton-Smith shares seven types of rest she has found lacking in the lives of those she encounters in her clinical practice and research-physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, sensory, social, creative-and why a deficiency in any one of these types of rest can have unfavorable effects on your health, happiness, relationships, creativity, and productivity. SACRED REST combines the science of rest, the spirituality of rest, the gifts of rest, and the resulting fruit of rest. It shows rest as something sacred, valuable, and worthy of our respect.
By combining scientific research with personal stories, spiritual insight, and practical next steps, SACRED REST gives the weary permission to embrace rest, set boundaries, and seek sanctuary without any guilt, shame, or fear.

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Resting is a lesson I’ve been working on learning for a long time now, but have really focused on during the last six to eight months of my life. Finding the balance between being and doing and what is really important. My life has become more rich and fulfilling when I take time to stop and rest instead of always try and accomplish, and that for me, is a huge accomplishment in and of itself.

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Beautiful. This book. It had long, flowing sentences, perfect word choices, and a fine balance as the author wove truths for us to read. She pulls stories from her own life, verses from the Bible, research from science, and accounts from her work as a doctor to back up everything she says and show how it makes sense.

I’ve been working on learning all of the lessons that were in this book, and I have got to say, I think my life during the last few years would have been different if I would have read this book earlier. I will probably read this book again and definitely recommend it. I highly recommend it to anyone who has gone through something like Lyme disease and needs to learn how to rest guilt-free.

Physical rest is something that has long been a part of my life. I have to rest a lot more than the average person due to having gone through years of being sick with Lyme disease. Until the last few months I balked and fought the rest, feeling like a failure or like others would view me as lazy. Gaining perspective and realizing how needed rest is, not just physically, but in all ways, was so important for me. That’s what I’ve been learning and this book only reinforced those lessons, plus expanded on them and reminded me just why rest (physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, socially, and sensory), is so needed.

One huge thing that helped me learn how to rest better and to enjoy it, is to really put my identity in who I am in Christ, not in what I can accomplish. That’s a big thing this book talked about (although maybe not with that wording). I really appreciated that and the whole view the author took on accomplishments. I mean, she’s obviously very accomplished (seeing how she’s a doctor and a published author, in addition to being a mother), but she seemed to view her accomplishments far below how she viewed the rest of her life. She clearly portrayed that who she is in Christ is more important than anything else, and that is so spot-on.

I generally read books fast. This one felt like it couldn’t be rushed. I read it slowly over about three weeks, savoring it and nibbling a few pages a day. It was delightful. One of those rare books that make me think of art and beauty. In fact, I savored the book so much that I had to carry it around with me all day long and am staying up late to finish this review on time. (Staying up late to finish a book about rest… Hmmm.)

Another thing the author points out in this book is that rest is sometimes a mindset – sometimes a five-minute breathing deeply session here or there – it’s not about being lazy or an excuse. I thought the author had a really good balance with how she talked about rest and the suggestions she gave for how to accomplish the art of resting.

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With reading the book over such a long period of time (three weeks, when I generally read a book within a few days), I don’t remember all my thoughts about the book. I feel like there were a few places early on that I didn’t agree with, but those were minor and I can’t recall them now. Overall, this book was spot-on and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it.

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I’m giving Sacred Rest 4 out of 5 stars, and 8 out of 10

*This book was given to me by Litfuse for reviewing

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