Monday, June 4, 2012

Resting

Be Still and Rest.

I used to dislike the verses instructing us to be still and to rest, but I tend to work myself beyond exhaustion and resting began to have more appeal. My days can get very, very busy. Work, school, and housework fill my waking hours. Movies, music, and radios drive away the silence. So I end my full day without giving God a chance to speak, because I'm not still and I'm not resting in Him. Being still is not a natural state to me; it takes a conscious effort. I have to intentionally pause the noise and push away distractions to interact with God.

Be still before the Lord; He will fight for us. (Exodus 14:14)
Be still before the Lord; He will make His move. (Psalm 37:7)
Be still before the Lord; know He is God. (Psalm 46:10)

Rest is:
Relief or freedom, especially from anything that wearies, troubles, or disturbs.
A period or interval of inactivity, repose, solitude, or tranquility.
To relieve weariness by cessation of exertion or labor.
Agriculture. to lie fallow or unworked: to let land rest.

The Sabbath, the weekly day of rest, is one of the ten commandments. Exodus 16:23, 34:21, and 35:2 reiterate that we are to rest on the Sabbath. No matter how many papers and projects I have coming up as a student, I only have 6 days to endure before resting again. Working every single day left me exhausted and staring hopelessly at the work that I still needed to get to. Did taking a Sabbath rest relieve me of my workload? Nope, but keeping a Sabbath encouraged me to work ahead. I would mentally reassure myself that my papers and projects would be done before the due date, but they did not have to be done so far in advance.

Psalm 62 says that "my soul finds rest in God" and Aaron Keyes has one of my favorite renditions of this Psalm in song. In Matthew 11:28-29 Jesus urges the weary and burdened to come to Him, and He will give you rest. Take His yoke upon you and learn from Him, for He is gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Being still and resting is sometimes counter-cultural and different. People are unnerved by silence. Looking inward sometimes is an exercise that is too painful to continue.

Rest. For God rested. (Genesis 2:2-3)
Rest. For God gives you rest. (Exodus 33:14)
Rest. For Jesus urged His disciples to rest. (Mark6:31)

Be still. Listen. Revel in His presence.
Rest. Recuperate. Refocus your goals to match His goals.
The Lord invites you to pause and get your needs met in Him.
How will you respond?

4 comments:

  1. I like this because you don't just put your thoughts on it (& I like them) but you also add scripture to support what you say. I enjoyed this & will read it again. You are right that it is not easy to be still or to listen but how else can I hear his voice?
    Pam G.

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  2. It is so easy to become task oriented rather than taking the time to slow down and "smell the flowers". Mom

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    Replies
    1. What are ways you remind yourself to slow down and smell the flowers?

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