“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28
It’s been a long day. After a full nights sleep, you rose early, labored at the office for 8 hours or more. Maybe you got a chance to squeeze in a workout. You come home to dinner, time with the family and their night time routine. You have at least an hour of required reading you need to get done, not to mention spend some quality time with your spouse. Did I mention you’re exhausted? All you really want to do is put your feet up and find a good movie to veg out to. You don’t have time for a movie so you settle for 15 minutes of a a show on your DVR before forcing yourself to your books. This is a typical day. You desire a feel-good moment with no responsibility and a break for your mind. But what you really need is rest.
Not sleep, but REST!
We all need it. Our days are full and seem to be getting fuller. This isn’t the first place you’ve read that the more technology we acquire to make life easier the busier we become. In the part of the world I live in it’s popular to work and be busy. It’s not uncommon for someone to work 60, or more, hours a week. Not everyone has a family life, but if you do, these relationships take time and energy. (Hopefully, they are fulfilling and life-giving relationships but they still take energy.)
If you are a stay-at home type then you might be more tired because you don’t leave your “job.” Cleaning, cooking, planning, shopping, managing, loving, educating, did I mention cleaning. You get the idea. There is much to do. We have friends, volunteer work, ministries and homes to maintain. We’re busy, we’re full, we’re tired.
Are you not busy? Maybe bored? That’s another kind of exhaustion that also manages to drain us of energy.
Yet it seems like so much effort to “come to Him”. We feel too tired to receive the rest He promises. It may seem like one more thing to add to the to-do list. And the additional “work” drives us away to the remote control, the refrigerator or the bed.
We are bid to come to a promised place of rest. A place free of burden and worry. A refreshing place of peace. This place is full of everything we need: strength, healing, wisdom, joy, comfort, vision, creativity, LOVE. It’s where dreams are imagined and hope is born.
You don’t have to climb a mountain to find it
or look miles away in some meadow of flowers.
You don’t have to travel to an island’s distant shore
or paddle across an abandoned lake.
It’s only as far away as our next deep breath.
Media, food nor pillows (nor any other go-to subsistence) will ever give you the rest and comfort you are really needing. It may get you through. It may help you cope one more hour or one more day but it will never get you there. So, how do you get there? How do we come to Him?
How do we enter His Rest?
Desire REST over coping.
Take the drive and strength that we use to get things done and lay it aside. We have to take off our self-reliance and self-sufficiency like a coat. This is one of the hardest steps for me. Sometimes I feel like if I take off this “coat” I’ll fall apart – as if this coat is what’s holding me together. Jeremiah 9:23-24
Get quiet. “Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
Have confidence that with your desire for Rest, the removing of self-sufficiency and becoming quiet that He will meet you. The place of rest is not a location it’s a communion. “In quietness and trust (confidence) is Your strength” Isaiah 30:15 (italics taken from KJV)
Lean on Him. Allow God to be the one to hold you together. Depend on Him for your strength, wisdom, and joy. Proverbs 3:5
Love on Him and receive Love. Share with Him, worship, listen, be filled. Psalm 36:7-10
This can be done in a few minutes or over long periods of time. Rest can be found in moments. He wants to give you rest. He wants to remove your worry and stress. He wants you to be whole, have vision and be filled with His strength. He wants to refresh you.
I am including a song below. The video is not much to look at – which is fine because you might do better to have your eyes closed. May it help you find that place of rest and remind you of His great love and promises that abound in His presence.
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