Hebrews 4:9-11 – “There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience. ” (NIV)
My friends and I are sitting around the table, coffee cups in hand, and the subject of resting comes up. One of my friends still has small children, so her resting time revolves around their schedules and usually comes only after they are in bed at night. One friend says she has no problem resting — sometimes she can rest all day, especially if a good book is involved! There is a part of me that actually envies her. I have a difficult time resting. I have this overwhelming compulsion to always be doing something. I guess it stems from being raised on a farm where there was always work that needed to be done and having a dad who liked for his children to be busy. When I was growing up, you could sit to eat or to shell something from the garden, but sitting to read a book or watch a movie was synonymous with being lazy. That idea has such deep roots in my psyche that some days I even struggle with the time spent sitting with You, Lord. Resting isn’t a bad thing. You even tell us to rest. In Mark 6:31, Jesus tells his disciples to find a quiet place and get some rest. Merriam – Webster defines rest as freedom from activity or labor. In Matthew 11: 28 You invite all who are weary and heavy-laden to come to You for rest. Psalm 4:8 David says “In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety. “(ESV). Benjamin Franklin is quoted as saying “he that can take rest is greater than he who can take cities.” Lord, in the day-to-day busyness and stresses of life, I can get caught up with what I tell myself I need to accomplish in a day. There’s an old hymn that says there is a place of quiet rest, a place to meet our Savior, a place of peace, near to the heart of God. Acts 3:20 says that times of refreshing come from Your presence. There are chores to do, meals to cook, errands to run, but, Lord, help me not to get so caught up in doing all of those things that I don’t take the time to come to You, to find my rest and peace in You.
Sometimes life gets so chaotic, and at those times I need to take it to the Lord instead of trying to resolve everything in my power. He is the only one who can give us that peace and rest we need during the chaos. Our wonderful Creator made the body to heal during sleep, and when we deprive ourselves of that sleep, we do not allow Him to do His marvelous restorative work in us. Thank you for the reminder.