“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
For some of us to think of rest can make us feel guilty. To the dreamer, the entrepreneur, and the go-getter every hour, minute, and second is an opportunity to remain productive for success. There are goals to reach and plans to fulfill! Like Steve Harvey said, “Rich people don’t sleep eight hours a day!” Perhaps, this is the case for them because they depend on themselves not God.
Depending on ourselves for everything will have us minimize rest in the hopes of increasing wealth, satisfaction, and success. But you see? Many people who had this mindset found themselves later with little to no peace even after the success and money they accumulated. In fact, some of the richest people have taken their own life. No sum of money can take away the dissatisfaction of the human soul. Most of these rich individuals placed great pressure on themselves to get money and then ended up finding it wasn’t the answer to their hunger for more out of life. More of what, really? Sadly, they failed to realize that getting more out of life is not something money can buy.
However, rest CAN!
I’m not just talking about any rest. I’m not referring to the all-day exclusive spa treatment, or getaway trip to Maui. No, I’m talking about the rest only Jesus can provide! The rest that when experienced reaches the depth of our soul and replenishes us to take on both invisible and visible challenges we will face while journeying in this life. In Matthew 11 Jesus says that those who come to Him will find rest.
Those of us who are familiar with this text often understand it as Jesus saying He would give us “eternal rest.” Peace from the troubles of this world and from our past sins and mistakes. A warm embrace to wipe away all of our worries, fears, and anxiety to say the least. Which in all respect is true! The Bible tells us in Philippians 4:7, ” And the peace of God which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus.” However, many of us have limited this verse only to satisfy us spiritually. Forgetting that whatever is of benefit to us spiritually will in turn benefit us physically and in the every day activities we partake in. Scripture backs this up, y’all! 1 Timothy 4:18 tells us, ” For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promises for both the present life and the life to come.”
Rest is godliness in the eyes of God! In fact, He designated for us to take a specific day out of the week to do just that. The Word of God makes known to us the Lord created the “Sabbath for man not man for the Sabbath.” The Lord knows that we humans are limited. We don’t have supernatural strength! We can’t keep going 24/7, 365 days a year giving a hundred percent with no breaks. Of, course not! Our body will warn us if we don’t slow down we’ll be RIP, real quick! Because God didn’t wire us that way. He wants us to seek His rest. And this rest does not only benefit us beyond our life here on earth; it sustains our life right now to do exactly what He created us to do!
If we don’t take the time to rest in His presence we will never unlock the fullness of our purpose.
When Jesus said, “Come to me and I will give you rest,” He wasn’t just talking about physical rest. He wasn’t talking about a rest to make life easy. He was talking about a rest that would give us POWER to live life ABUNDANTLY! In spite of the obstacles we may face along the way. In spite of the fatigue you will have in working to provide for your family, achieve your dreams and goals in hopes of creating a future that will be greater than your past.
Jesus already knew that there would be moments you would want to give up because things got hard. Certain things didn’t fall into place as you hope they would. To the point where you don’t know why you should keep pushing for a vision that doesn’t look realistic! I don’t know about you? But there have been times I wanted stop pushing. I thought that’s what made more sense. When things around me didn’t make any sense! But God made it clear that I shouldn’t stop, instead I needed to pause. “Huh?!” Pause. Hold on a second… isn’t a pause the same as a stop? Apparently to the Lord they aren’t. They really aren’t the same! Technically a pause is a temporary stop. Literally! That’s one of its definitions.
I have learned more in depth the rest that Jesus offers us helps us to detox. Remove from us things of the flesh, the world, the lies we tell ourselves and the opinion of others, in order to reset our thinking. Giving us a better perspective to focus on “Fighting the good fight of faith.” To become all God created us to be and fulfill all He’s destined us to do. You see, when we pause to rest we don’t stop we yield. To yield means to SLOW DOWN. Pausing just enough to hear God and know the plans He has for us. Hearing Him and knowing His plans for our lives refocuses our minds and gives us the strength to run with life instead of having life run over us!
Resting doesn’t make us weak and powerless. It does the complete opposite! When we rest it makes us UNSTOPPABLE! The rest Jesus offers is a rest to empower and revive us. When we experience feelings of anxiety, fear, doubt, emptiness, dissatisfaction, it has more to do with the absence of rest than the absence of not working enough. Not giving our all enough to make ourselves more at ease from the stresses of life. If we think this way, we are no different from people who’ve failed to realize peace is not attainable with our own strength, with money, or how much work we do. Only Jesus can give us peace! Why do you think He is called the Prince of Peace? These emotions and states mentioned above can come up in our life as result of not RESTING enough in Him. Friend, the Lord wants you to know A Pause is Not a Complete Stop. It’s a moment to allow yourself to do only what He can do for you—Give you peace.
Only Jesus can take away
And so many other things that keep us awake at night. Each of us are currently dealing with one of these from the list. The good news is you don’t have to let it have control over you? Come to Jesus and He will give you rest. He knows exactly what you are in need of this very moment. I don’t know about you? But I choose to make September my month of Rest. My month to Detox to Reset. I have come too far to give up now! And so have YOU! The only way our weakness and fatigue due to the stress of life, work, and all the things which pulls us every which way will diminish is deciding to spend more time coming to Jesus and resting in Him! I encourage you to take time this September to rest. Let the Lord refresh you during this time. Remember, don’t feel guilty about it one bit! You’re not putting a stop in pursuing what matters in seeking rest. This is just a pause, friend! A pause is not a complete stop. From that being said, you really should do it more often!
“It only gets better from here.”