Constructive Rest

In honor of my MFA studies, I will be attempting some cross-inspiration/application between the actor’s discipline and the Christian life. My working title for these short thoughts will be “Targets” after Declan Donnellan’s acting text, referring “targets” as sources of action, inspiration, energy, and motivation outside of the actor. We’ll see where this goes.


“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.” Exodus 20:8

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10


God calls and commands us to keep a holy cessation. To find that Alexandrian “continual renewal” of the conditions “from which your best performance reliably emerges.” What a sacred undoing! What a gift rest is. To be still and know that the gravity of grace upholds me still.

How to rest: Lie down on the floor with your knees up, arms relaxed at your sides, and your head on a book. You must find a posture of ease to relieve any pressure on your spine, your core, your strength. (Even your strength must rest.) You close your eyes and invite your tongue to descend from its power grab at the roof of your mouth. You will not need your speech, so it can step down from readiness. Unclench your jaw, it need not defend you from the world. Release your mind. Whatever thoughts obsess you must be banished for this time. And time. You must forget time. Trust that you are held for this era of erasure.

Rising from your rest, you are re-organized in a way un-recreatable. Constructive rest and Sabbath-keeping is cumulative. You must commit to being undone in order to fully do when ’tis time to do.

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