R is for Rest
“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.He does not faint or grow weary, his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” Is. 40:28-31
I don’t know about you, but I’d like an extra dose of power and renewed strength, please. Most days fatigue overwhelms me before I can conquer the endless to-do lists. At first I attributed my busyness to being a college student and working, then to being married and working, then to being a stay at home mom with babies. Babies turned into home school peeps with no break in busyness. Now that my babies are in teenagers in school, and I’m finding I’m still as busy as ever, I’m realizing my busyness didn’t happen to me – I chose it. Not consciously. There was just much to do and so I did.
I’m realizing my busyness didn’t happen to me – I chose it.
A close friend of mine died last fall. His death has made me realize life is short. Really short. James 4:14 says, “yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.” If I could go back, I’d tell my younger self to rest. There is no reward for the person who squeezes the most into a day, year or lifetime. You aren’t somehow more loved or valued because of what you’ve accomplished. You aren’t more productive, your not going to win anything. You are just making yourself and all those around you nuts because your emotions are worn thin, and you have no reserves for life’s unexpecteds.
Priscilla Shirer in her book Fervent talks about the children of Israel when they were slaves in Egypt. They worked all day controlled by their schedule – with no rest.. When they were freed, God gave them the Sabbath as a day to cease, to stop. They struggled with it, because they still thought like slaves. How often do I get frantically dizzy on the hamster wheel of life, not realizing I can just choose to step off.
“It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.” Gal. 5:1
I’m done with being a slave! Who’s with me? Let’s embrace the freedom we have in Christ. No more being chained to my schedule, other people’s expectations or believing my worth is tied up in what I do. In rest I find satisfaction in what really matters in life – contentment, peace, balance, health and wholeness.
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and lowly in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matt. 11:28-30