Monday, May 3, 2010


I think it is interesting how we can read something and hear something a thousand times but then, one day, it's like the meaning of it has opened to us in a new way. I have been learning about "rest" for the past 2 1/2 years. What does it mean to be still? What does it mean to rest in the Lord? I was thinking about the verses in Matthew (11: 28 & 29)...

Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls."

When I first began studying this topic it was because my life was "too full." I was teaching and supervising the dorm, raising a teenager, volunteering, and spending most of my free moments helping my Amy escape the confines of her home. I wanted to know what it looked and felt like to be still. I wanted to learn how to shake off the expectations of others - including those of the church - and find rest in the Lord. I wanted to be doing what He wanted me to do, not what others wanted me to do.

This doesn't seem to be a subject I have exhausted because today it came to mind again only from a different angle. I have simplified my life, I no longer meet myself coming and going, yet I think I am far from being still. My habit now is to excessively plan. I try to force a new future for myself. I try to do it alone. In Luke (12:22-34) Jesus talks to his disciples about planning and worrying. I'm going to summarize and paraphrase a little bit...

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life...who of you, by worrying can add a single hour to it? Since you can't even add one hour - a very simple thing - why do you worry about the rest? Consider the lilies. They don't work or labor. Yet you won't find even a king dressed as splendidly as one of these flowers. If God cares so much about them, imagine the thought He bestows on you! You have such little faith. And DO NOT PLAN what comes not worry about it. This is what the world does. Your Father knows what you need. Seek Him. Everything, including your future, will be provided for."

My Father does not ask me to "help" Him plan my life. He created me for Himself. It is only through Him that I will find refreshment, restoration, guidance, stillness. Sarah Young says in her book Jesus Calling that "most people let their moments slip through their fingers, half-lived. They avoid the present by worrying about the future or longing for a better time and place." I'm afraid I am guilty of this. How many moments have I allowed to slip through my fingers? My Creator is with me now, at this moment, in the present. He longs for me to come to Him, to walk with Him, to rest in Him.

"You made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find rest in You."
-St. Augustine

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