A journey from trauma to authenticity
Working from a place of rest by Tony Horsfall
Working from a place of rest by Tony Horsfall

Working from a place of rest by Tony Horsfall

Book review – Working from a Place of Rest by Tony Horsfall, BRF 2010

This book is written for people who are serving in Christian ministry, who are perhaps starting to feel overwhelmed, stressed, or are heading for burnout.

The first part of the book develops the metaphor of life as a journey, using the life of Jesus as an example. He explores the journeys of discipleship, inner transformation and the stages of life as we age. He provides some reflection questions to aid engagement with the material in the book.

The middle part of the book discusses reasons people become tired and worn out, and looks at the concept of creating margin in different areas of life. He then provides permission from the Bible to stop and rest, keep sabbath, and emphasises the importance of play. He reminds us that everything does not depend on us. We need to say “no” to make time for our true “yes”.

He then addresses the deeper motivations for over-work, when we have something to prove, and encourages the reader to move to centring their worth in God, so work can be an overflow of love, not a way to gain love.

Finally, he writes about developing spiritual practices, which encourage us to recognise our dependence on God. This leads to a discussion of contemplative activists, whom he describes as people who “work just as hard as anyone else, yet they do so in a way that expresses their dependency on God and takes account of their own humanity.”

There is a lot of practical wisdom to be found in these pages. I read this book when I felt overwhelmed, and it certainly pointed me on a journey which has proved to have many layers to it! I recommend it for any Christian who is doing too much!

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