Why We Need 24/6: Guest Post by Lori Harris

by | Sep 10, 2014 | Book Club, Sabbath

Today in week two of our Rest Revolution, it is my pleasure to welcome Lori Harris to the blog, a Sabbath Society peep whose whole being seeps joy and encouragement. As a mom to six of her own and a porch full of neighborhood children, she manages to still make Sabbath a priority. Her authentic nature and brave hospitality inspire me continually.


I never gave Sabbath so much as a sideways glance until my body laid itself down on the kitchen floor and decided it was not going to go through with all the things my mind had planned.

I remember the cool of the floor against my flushed cheek and the quiet whirr of the refrigerator and the way my tears pooled on the linoleum. My chest ached and my head pounded and my heart was splintered into bits.  I didn’t want to die but I could not imagine living another day like I’d lived the last twelve years.

Twelve years of babies and seven moves and years of seminary had left me body worn and weary. Twelve years of doing good and right and noble things had left me puffed up and proud.  Twelve years spent thinking that I had to do good to earn God’s pleasure had left me angry and bitter and jaded.

Twelve years of striving had left me chasing the lie that what I do matters more than who I am.

I don’t remember how long I spent sprawled out on the kitchen floor but I do remember that in the stillness of the moment, I felt Jesus come near to me.

And when He came near, I surrendered every piece of me.

Jesus, the Come to Me and I will give you rest Jesus, came to me, and the nearness to Him was the very thing my soul was craving.

It has been more than a year since I fell prostrate on the floor of my kitchen and got still enough to feel my chest heave under the weight of the life I had made for myself.  This sudden stop to the life I once knew was painfully eye-opening and gloriously transformative.

When Jesus came near to me, I immediately slipped away into a thirty-one day journey to simply be. I set a few of my spinning plates back in the cupboard and let a handful of good things go. I got quiet and ceased writing. I sat on the porch and stared off into nothingness. I snuggled my kids and braided long locks of curls. I cleaned my calendar and my house and my mind.

And I came near to Jesus.

I let Jesus whisper quiet words of healing into the gaping holes in my heart. I began to be compassionate with myself and let go of years of shame. I asked myself questions that invited deep excavations of my soul.  And these dry and thirsty bones came to life.


As I consider Sabbath, I am more in tune with my own humanity and my aching need for a sacred rhythm of life.  I eat when I’m hungry. I write when I feel a gust of creativity. I wrap my arms around the Man when I’m in need of physical touch. I take long walks because I need to breathe in deep and long and wide. I have coffee with friends because I am made for community and my life is rich when I spend it with others. I feed my neighbors because hungry faces remind me that that face could be my own. And I rest because this frail, dying body calls out for relief.

But Sabbath is more than simply rest.

It is the prelude to a week of good and right and noble doing.

It is the catalyst by which we are propelled into this world to be the hands and feet of the Gospel.

It is the weekly call to come and remember who we are and to whom we belong.

It is an invitation to crawl up in the arms of Jesus and be loved, lavishly.

When I look at my own journey to Sabbath, I see a distinct movement from doing to simply being. Jesus met me in my most desolate place and held me, inviting me to come and rest. 

And I wonder, how has Jesus whispered to your soul and called you to come and rest? How has He shown you your great need for Sabbath?

Leave your answer to Lori’s question in the comments and then join us for more discussion at Redemptions Beauty Book Club, where we are delving into 24/6: A Prescription for a Healthier, Happier Life by Matthew Sleeth every Wednesday in September. This week, Sabbath Society peep, Becky Keife  is helping me lead our conversation.

Profile Pic For EverythingLori Harris is a Southern born, Texas-missing girl, who is rearing her six kids in a neighborhood some would call the ‘hood. She and her bi-vocational husband have planted Fellowship Bible Church Rocky Mount on the wrong side of the railroad tracks where poverty runs deep and racism even deeper. She coordinates a city-wide MOPS group, passes out PBJs to the neighborhood kids, and brews coffee just to make the house smell like Jesus. She writes at loriharris.me.


Subscribe for Shelly’s stories and free resources here: https://shellymillerwriter.com/free-resources/


  1. Becky Keife

    I love this, Lori! Your words here are real and gritty and inspiring! I’m taking these two nuggets to mediate on tonight:

    It is the weekly call to come and remember who we are and to whom we belong.

    It is an invitation to crawl up in the arms of Jesus and be loved, lavishly.

    …looking forward to deeper conversation through the book club tomorrow. Thanks for sharing your story and beautiful heart.

    • Lori Harris

      I love that you picked out the weekly call quote. I’m on day 5 of an 8 day vacation and yesterday, I was feeling sort of lost in the free time. Just a reminder that this world will carry on quite alright without me.
      And that all I need is Jesus.
      Thank you for your kind words, Becky.

  2. DeanneMoore

    Love this Lori. Really. I relate in so many ways to your experience on the kitchen floor. But what I loved most was how that humble place brought you to today, how you got in touch with your humanity and cared for yourself, rested. I love the fruit that is bearing in your life. I bet you make an awesome PBJ!

    • Lori Harris

      Actually, I believe my PB-Honey sandwiches are my specialty! But the PBJ ones are quite delicious, if I do say so myself.

      It’s funny how I’ve spent most of my life not being in touch with my human flesh and now that I’m getting older, it’s all I seem to think about. I can’t help but lean into rest. Thank you for sharing a bit of your story as well.

  3. JViola79

    Wonderful post, Lori. Sabbath is the prelude to everything which our week will hold. Sabbath is the invitation we are given to just be – just be with Him. We can get so excited over every other invitation we receive whether in the mail or by email or by evite. We can hardly wait to give our RSVP. Yet this one invitation, given so freely & often to us, we let wait. May I, and each who reads, accept His invitation each week and just come and be. with. Him. Grateful to have stopped this morning to read this. I am loving the book 24/6.

    • Lori Harris

      Hello there Joanne! I love seeing you here. I love the idea of giving an RSVP, for Jesus is expecting us and it delights Him when we show up to receive His gift. Blessings to you, faithful friend.

  4. Sheila Dailie

    “It is an invitation to crawl up in the arms of Jesus and be loved, lavishly.”

    What a beautiful picture! For me, it touched a tender memory that I had not brought out to examine for a long time. But it is also a wonderful cameo of what Sabbath does for our spirit.

    Thank you so much!

    • Lori Harris

      I believe that is exactly what the Sabbath is! Thankful my story woke up something in you!

  5. Jeniffer Sheriff Smith

    This. The doing when He leads instead of pushing and striving and forcing…it’s a hard lesson that I’m still working through. That some days I will be tired and my mind won’t think of the things that I need to do until it’s too late but that I will do all that I need to do if I’m leaning on Him. It’s humbling and freeing and beautiful when I remember, though. <3

    • Lori Harris

      It is humbling and freeing, isn’t it? Praying Jesus redeems any time you feel like you’re losing in the seeking of rest. He can redeem the time, you know? He’s good at that. Blessings to you, friend. You’re faithful.

  6. Peggy

    Lori, so sweet to read you here. You know I totally relate to your feelings and need to step back. Love, love, love this: “I let Jesus whisper quiet words of healing into the gaping holes in my heart. ” I am on the floor today. So tired, too much ahead. Needing rest but needing to help my girls too.

    • Lori Harris

      Hello there Peggy! Joining you on that floor while you get your life done today. Praying a swooshing in of the Holy Spirit to your space today. Love to you, friend.

  7. Rachel

    Lori, I was feeling…and have been feeling this way for a few years of living on the constant edge of the urgent and haggard. God has been working on me in this whole resting thing….and with my hubby as well.
    In Dec of last year, my hubby asked our church council for the whole month of August off this year so we could “Sabbath” with our family. We just returned from our month of Sabbath and God has done some amazing things in me, my hubby and our family.
    Time away from the hub-bub of life and the constant drumming of noise can bring refreshing to your soul and renewed energy, clear perspective and rest for the weary that we just can’t get if we don’t enter a time of Sabbath.
    I’m learning to live more with Sabbath time. I’m learning to slow my life down and believe me…I’m a much better mama, a better wife, a better friend and a much better lover of Him when I learn to rest in Him. Thank you for your words of encouragement!

    • Lori Harris

      I’m so glad that you have a church body that will grant your family some much needed rest. What a gift! Sabbath is the well from which all good things flow and it seems to me you’ve got a full well from which to draw. Thank you for being here Rachel.

  8. Danielle Wheeler

    This is beautiful. And it gives me hope as my family and I are just embarking into a new rhythm of life, one that is intent on being rather than doing. Like you, we had to reach the end of ourselves to get here, but as we take our first steps into this new rhythm, I am tasting the freedom already. Thank you for sharing your story.

  9. Jennifer

    Jesus whsipers to me through my writing. I write to him, to others, to his angels, i write simply because i can. And he shows up as wisdom, kniwledge and my friend in between the pages. I slow down often, to write. I realize when i just stop and listen for him, he just loves to speak to me. And he comes in so many shades of beauty, more than i can imagine: thoughts, music, word in the song, smiles, hugs, nature, …Quiet! Wow hes just so amazing and i long to be in His presence every single night. Thanks for asking!

Pin It on Pinterest