Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Review: Sacred Rest by Saundra Dalton Smith, MD

Sacred Rest
By Saundra Dalton-Smith, MD
FaithWords, 2018


Staying busy is easy. Staying well rested- 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.

Learn more and purchase a copy.

My thoughts

Sacred Rest just might be the most beneficial book I’ve read in a long time. If you enjoy non-fiction, this is one you should definitely pick up. And if you don’t read much non-fiction, this is still a book you should invest your time in. Sacred Rest is not theology, and shouldn’t be held to that standard, but rather a book that speaks to the whole person – physical, emotional, and spiritual. While targeted more toward women, it’s a book everyone would find enriching.

Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith is a gifted communicator, engaging writer, loving mom, and committed Christian. As a medical doctor, she is well qualified in sharing her thoughts and experiences, and her writing is grounded in Scripture. Her style is conversational and real – so real, in fact, that I wouldn’t have been surprised to look up from my book and see her across the room from me, for I often felt she was speaking directly to me.

Sleep is not rest. As different parts of an intricate
system, sleep and rest are designed to work
together to ensure every part of you has a way
to regenerate and be restored. (p. 6)

The author delves deeply into the concept of rest, exploring areas and concepts that, while totally new to me, make complete sense. When I think of how often I’ve awaken, still tired after a good night’s sleep, I can see that sleep does not necessarily equate to feeling rested. I love this quote from page 8: “Sleep is solely a physical activity. Rest, however, penetrates into the spiritual. Rest speaks peace into the daily storms your mind, body, and spirit encounter. Rest is what makes sleep sweet.”

In short, easy-to-manage chapters, the author explores the seven different types of rest that our often burned-out bodies require – physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, sensory, and creative – followed by the gifts of each. I’ve learned so much already, especially in understanding that the specific area in which we’ve exerted energy needs the corresponding type of rest. I’ve barely scratched the surface of all there is to take in and am eager to go back and read in depth.

What I like best about this book is how the physical and spiritual are linked together, as they should be. My thanks to Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith for sharing her thoughts.

Highly recommended.

I was provided a copy of this book through Litfuse Publicity. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.


Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith is an author, speaker, and board-certified physician. She has an active medical practice in Alabama (near the Birmingham area). She received her B.S. in Biochemistry at the University of Georgia, and graduated with honors from Meharry Medical College in Nashville. She has been an adjunct faculty member at Baker College and Davenport University in Michigan teaching courses on health, nutrition, and disease progression.

Dr. Dalton-Smith is a national and international media resource on the mind, body, spirit connection and has been featured in Women's Day, Redbook, and First For Women magazine. She is the author of "Set Free to Live" and "Come Empty" (winner 2016 Golden Scroll Nonfiction Book of the Year and 2016 Illumination Award Gold medalist).

She is a member of the Christian Medical and Dental Association and a repeat keynote speaker at their annual gathering. She has shared her tips on merging faith and medicine with over 16,000 health care professionals to encourage the current and next generation of doctors to treat the whole person.

Find out more about Saundra at


  1. Boy do I struggle with this! Thanks Carole!

  2. This sounds like a book that ALL of us need to read and long to experience!

  3. This sounds like just the read I need! It certainly is a challenge to staying well rested and motivated.