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The Rest of God: Restoring Your Soul by Restoring Sabbath
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The Rest of God: Restoring Your Soul by Restoring Sabbath

4.25 of 5 stars 4.25  ·  rating details  ·  690 ratings  ·  98 reviews
Most of us feel utterly ransacked: we're waylaid by endless demands and stifling routines. Even our vacations have a panicky, task-like edge to them. "If I only had more time," is the mantra of our age. But is this the real problem?

Widely acclaimed author Mark Buchanan states that what we've really lost is "the rest of God-the rest God bestows and, with it, that part of hi
ebook, 240 pages
Published January 1st 2006 by Thomas Nelson Publishers
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After reading a couple good reviews of Mark Buchanan's work a year or so ago I bought a couple of his books. Upon receiving the books, though, they quickly languished on my shelves. They looked too "pop-culturey" to me to rouse me to read.

I'm glad they finally made it into my hands.

"The Rest of God" is an excellent book. Buchanan is a bit like an evangelical, male version of Annie Dillard. There is a stillness and a slowness-even a choppiness- in the way he writes.

"The Rest of God" is really a
Josh Miller
Mark Buchanan is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. Not only was the content of the book life-changing, it personally spoke to me at length. The message of the book is one that is glossed over by most Bible-believers and Buchanan deftly describes in an opening chapter what the book is about..."The argument of this book is that we uniquely take up his invitation by keeping Sabbath, both as a day and as an attitude."

I found myself musing deeply on the thoughts presented throughout the bo
I've never read a book about Sabbath before; about rest. And I'm not very good at it. I took about three months to read this book. Mark Buchanan is one of my favorite writers and he only comes out with a book about once a year, so I don't like to finish the book too quickly.

His writings are like Philip Yancey's. If you like Yancey, you'll like Buchanan. His books make you think about where you are with the Lord.

God's rest is provided for us to revive, rejuvenate, and give up control. If you wan
Garland Vance
My wife and I set a goal a few months ago to begin living life at a slower pace in order to better be aware of God's presence and to live in a way that values relationships, not just productivity. As part of this journey, we determined to beginning intentionally practicing a Sabbath. So we needed to learn more about it. This is why I began reading The Rest of God.

This book was incredible for several reasons. First, Mark Buchanan writes more like a poet than a writer of spiritual works. He uses b
I just finished reading The Rest of God for the third time. I'm sure I'll read it again.

Yes, Buchanan is a fantastic writer (his syntax and diction are well-chosen and compelling), but what what brings me back to The Rest of God is the importance of rest (or struggle with rest) in my own life. One of the book's strengths is that it addresses the importance of rest on the Sabbath as well as throughout the week; it's about more than just what we should do on Sunday (or Saturday).

I found myself re
This book was recommended to me and was the first chance I have had to read Buchanan. There are certain books which give you a glimpse of an author's state of mind when writing, for me this was one of those books. Buchanan's words are rich and inviting like a good cup of coffee on a cold winters day. It is the tenor of these words as much as the content which invites you to a place of contemplation and reflection, into as he says The Rest of God. Sabbath is something I have been pondering for so ...more
Loved, loved, loved this book. The topic of Sabbath keeping and a Sabbath lifestyle is sorely needed these days and I've found myself grappling with best ways to implement Sabbath for the past few years (young kids so rhythms change a lot). The author give some good insights and good Scriptural backing for those insights, but the real joy of this book is his beautiful prose. It was restful and pleasant just to read his words and stories. Highly recommended! (If you read a book and think 'just ge ...more
This is a wonderful book that gives great insight into the Sabbath - why God created it, how he uses it to shape and nurture us and why he commands us to keep it. I love the way Buchanan shares how to start incorporating rest into your life at the end of each chapter. It's a very readable book - although if you are like me, you may need to read it periodically to remind yourself WHY you should resist our culture's tendency to over-schedule, over-commit and in most every way avoid resting. I've r ...more
Nancy Peifer
Best book I've read recently, but maybe because I need Sabbath rest... Buchanan is not only a Bible scholar but a poet and a very real and humble man. His wisdom has not come easily but is shared freely and expressed beautifully. If you are weary this is a must read, but it is not a 5 easy steps to rest type book--thankfully. Readers are challenged to take an honest look at what Sabbath is, an honest look at their own life, and then decide what they need to do to obey the Sabbath command and fin ...more
Dean Anderson
I'm finished, but I didn't finish the book. It's okay, it has some good content. (I especially liked the point about the difference between the treatment of the Sabbath in Exodus and Deuteronomy). But there is just something about Buchanan's style and his exceedingly long illustrations that made me decide to quit about two thirds of the way through.
Nicholas Maulucci
excellent book. recommended for pastors. my thoughts are too many and complicated to one-finger type them on my kindle.
John Kaess
One of my favorite books, worth re-reading once a year. Extremely well written with life changing and needed ideas about rest, and that God designed us to need rest, thinking it so important that it was a part of the 10 commandments, just like not murdering.
Robert Miner
Well written, transparent presentation of a neglected topic, both here in the Middle East, as well as in Europe.
We've neglected the practice of the sabbath to our own detriment. Our landscape is cluttered with burnt-out pastors, over-stressed elders, unfocused disciples, and joyless followers of Christ.
Both Buchanan and I agree, there must be a relationship between these two practices.
In our central European (German speaking) work ethic, we exercise disciple only for work, to "turn on", however
A fantastic book, on many levels. Buchanan is a writer who's easy to read. His ideas are somewhat provocative, while still being accessible and digestible. I have to say, my thoughts on Sabbath were antiquated and warped. Once I read this, it just plain makes sense. Perhaps my biggest takeaway though is that the Sabbath, while in many ways a test-run of the hereafter, is very much here and now a time to embrace that which is most life-giving. Rather than seeing the Sabbath as an obligatory "holy ...more
This book is one pastor's interpretation and application of the Sabbath.

Not a bad book. Not earth-shattering, but not bad. I found the author had some helpful insights. I also think he's as confused as the rest of us.

There are some contradictions in his ideas. For example, he states that since God rested from creating on the 7th day, so should we. No creating. Just enjoy what already exists. OK, makes sense. Then he equates his sabbatical to a year-long sabbath. OK. Then he mentions that he's
This book reads like Mark Buchanan speaks. It is neither theological nor argumentative. While the word of God is described as a sword that pierces the heart, this book Is like a blanket that wraps around you and comforts you until you go away feeling different.
Rather than making "good points," he provides vivid descriptions of life and engaging stories.

Probably the thing he does best in the book is describe what Sabbath practically can look like. Perhaps he assumes that if you're reading the boo
So refreshing and insightful. I like Buchanan's eloquent yet concise style.

There are times in our lives when certain books hold more weight than others. I was needing rest and not finding it because of my own striving for it... Mark helped me navigate and cut a path straight through to that rest.

The book lay around my house for 3 weeks while 4 of us (my parents were visiting) snatched it and read pieces as we were able. There was much to talk about, think about, pray about, repent from, and run
The author begins each chapter kind of in a poetic, aesthetic way with stories of his life or something about beauty and creation. There are many good books on The Sabbath and this is one of them for sure. A thought I had as I read about sabbatical was, is sabbatical really a biblical concept? Sabbath surely is. He wrote about the luxury of taking a sabbatical (he was on one when he wrote the book.) People outside the ministry bubble don't have that luxury. I had the thought, "If those in minist ...more
Nathan Klinger
A helpful perspective on the Sabbath. This is not a theological work by any means but it's certainly practical and a good supplement to a theological work. At the foundation of our understanding of Sabbath, or what I think should be, is our union and relationship with Christ. As Christians we ultimately find our rest and life abundant in Him. In what He has done and is doing on our behalf. However, there's more to it as well. This book shows how the idea of Sabbath is really a lifestyle and an a ...more
Eli Mostrales
from the Introduction:

Our most significant relationships and events have a liturgical shape to them. They have rites of passage. Birthdays and homecomings, graduations and good-byes, Thanksgiving an Christmas and Easter, birth and death and marriage: all are marked by words and actions, songs and symbols, customs and traditions that enact them and complete them. And all these things also provide us with a means of entering them. What is a birthday without a cake, at least one candle burning on i
May 10, 2014 Toni is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
So far he is too wordy and the stories/examples can be a stretch. I did not enjoy chapter one, but hold out hope for chapter two and beyond.
I've read many books on the Sabbath, and this is one of my favorite. It's an insightful, beautifully written book on the theology of time.
An excellent book that I plan to read frequently as a reminder of what a gift the sabbath is to us as God's beloved children. It is interestingly written but best read one chapter at a time to let the ideas sink in and take root. I highly recommend this book!
great truths to be found in this book. What is it to rest in God? It's to be perfectly satisfied in what has been done. Excellent.
I've always seen Sabbath as the tenth commandment that I know I should be keeping, but am not quite sure how to, so I've kind of guiltily tucked it away to figure out later. But this book totally turned that perception upside-down and showed me that Sabbath is a beautiful gift from an extravagant God, a gift meant to enrich and expand my life, not burden it.
The book was well-written and I really enjoyed the author's laid-back, far-from-legalistic, approach. I do think I will need to reread it t
Steve Penner
Having read a lot about Sabbath in the past, I didn't have high expectations for anything new or unique. I was not disappointed. Buchanan is a decent writer, but found his style to be a little too "cutesy" at times. A couple of chapters seemed to wander from beginning to end and I wondered what the point truly was. Certainly there are overly busy people, pastors in particular, who could benefit from reading this, but I would point them to Eugene Peterson and Marva Dawn first.
Chris Priestley
Breathes life, imagination and creativity into the rigidity of Sabbath rest.
Lynn Austin
Great book about taking the rest of Shabbat
Juan Flores Zuñiga
I love how Mark Buchanan approaches the rest of God. His is sometimes poetic and soft. Sabbat is a sweet gift from God for us. It was not included as 4th commandment for the benefit of God but ourselves. So Buchanan is not looking to reinforce religious law, but share the benefits of a rythm of live. His work really brings light to the contributions of authors like Peter Scazzero, Ruth Halley Barton, Lance Witt, Eugene Peterson and Parker Palmer. Enjoyed the book and my convfiction of building i ...more
A very timely read. Well-written. I highly recommend it. Ah, the rest of God.
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  • Keeping the Sabbath Wholly: Ceasing, Resting, Embracing, Feasting
  • Sabbath Keeping: Finding Freedom in the Rhythms of Rest
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  • The Great Omission: Reclaiming Jesus's Essential Teachings on Discipleship
  • After You Believe: Why Christian Character Matters
  • The Sabbath: Its Meaning for Modern Man
  • Sabbath: Finding Rest, Renewal, and Delight in Our Busy Lives
  • A Glimpse of Jesus: The Stranger to Self-Hatred
  • Sacred Pathways
  • Spiritual Disciplines Handbook: Practices That Transform Us
  • Discipline: The Glad Surrender
  • Surrender to Love: Discovering the Heart of Christian Spirituality
Mark Buchanan lives in Calgary, Alberta, with his wife, Cheryl. They have three young adult children, Adam, Sarah, and Nicola. He was a longtime pastor, an author of many books, and now serves as a professor at Ambrose University College in Calgary.
More about Mark Buchanan...
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“The examen is a form of personal inventory. At day’s end, spend time in prayerful reflection on your day: your comings and goings, routines and disruptions, work and play, discoveries and disappointments. Think about who you met, or missed. Think about your moments of aloneness. In all, ask two questions: when was I most alive, most present, most filled and fulfilled today? And when was I most taxed, stressed, distracted, depleted today? A simpler, and more spiritually focused, version of those questions: when did I feel closest to God, and when farthest?” 4 likes
“In a culture where busyness is a fetish and stillness is laziness, rest is sloth. But without rest, we miss the rest of God: the rest he invites us to enter more fully so that we might know him more deeply. “Be still, and know that I am God.” Some knowing is never pursued, only received. And for that, you need to be still. Sabbath is both a day and an attitude to nurture such stillness. It is both time on a calendar and a disposition of the heart. It is a day we enter, but just as much a way we see. Sabbath imparts the rest of God—actual physical, mental, spiritual rest, but also the rest of God— the things of God’s nature and presence we miss in our busyness.” 0 likes
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