“No one should ever pick ‘rest’ as their word for the year!” my friend exclaimed. She had spent quite a lot of time in the hospital that year with some life-threatening conditions. “Too late for me,” I thought. I knew that ‘rest’ was my word for 2015. What the year of “now” revealed was the frenzy inside. Rest was the right word.
Like my friend, I have had surprises in this theme of rest. Ironically, this is my busiest travel year in a while. On top of that, there are major projects requiring a lot of time, thought and energy, leaving me wondering how things will get done.
To actually “Rest” means you respond to an invitation. Jesus says, “Come to Me, all you who are weary and heavy-laden…” Like a physical invitation, you can read it and put it on a pile. You can know that you’re invited, but that doesn’t mean you’re going. You have to RSVP and you have to show up! The invitation to “come” is throughout Scripture. Knowing that doesn’t give you rest. Coming to Jesus and laying your concerns with Him is the start of a heart at rest.
Isaiah 30:15 gave me another insight – to repent. Repentance and rest lead to salvation. There are some nuances in these words that made me think about turning away from my own solutions and turning toward God, as well as stepping down, settling. How many times is my own unrest generated from holding on to my own ways, and trying to be in control, rather than turning to the Lord and letting Him be in control?
My unrest often comes from holding on to my own ways and wanting to be in control.
The verse goes on to say quietness and trust are your strength. Quietness instructs me to let God lead me, to follow, rather than try to figure it out all in advance. Trusting in the Sovereign Lord means I need to remember and rely on His greatness, His love, His power. The more I remember who He is in all His glory, the easier it is to stay at rest. My confidence in Him grows when I am continually reminded of who He is and what He has promised.
The more I come to the Lord with what’s going on with me in real time, the more I am able to rely on Him. And that reliance, that confidence that He will supply what is needed that brings my heart to rest, right in the midst of demanding days and busy seasons.
I like that. I like it a lot. Praying for these habits to take hold in me.
What has helped you find “rest” in the midst of busy seasons?