[I find I am quick to forget what God teaches me. And so I’ve been trying to write it out. But then God teaches me more and I get distracted. And eventually I find I’ve been working on this post for 2 weeks or so…]
Towards the end of camp, I distinctly and vividly remember one night crying to my cosie (camp lingo for cocounselor) about being so tired and asking her the question “When will God just let me rest?” There is always “something.” Something looming over my happiness. I was tired of worrying and stressing.
It was a hard night. I was struggling with God. It is exhausting.
So when a friend’s status on Facebook posed the question “when will be the time of rest?” That night came flashing back to me.
And the answer is both never and now.
Yes, the time of rest is both never and now.
It is seemingly contradicting, is it not? But it all depends on your definition of rest.
If we are looking for a time when there will be no work to do or no problems, then that day will come when as Christians we enter into God’s house, which has been prepared for us in eternity. I am sure in Heaven we will be busy with praise and worship and the fellowship that will take place in His presence. But it will be good and stress free.
So “never” in the sense of real world time. Up to the day of our mortal death there will always be “something” looming over us.
Let’s look at the positive answer: The time of rest is now.
We often get caught up in the world and not in the arms of our Father. God wants us to rest in Him and find peace in knowing He is in control of every situation.
We say this all the time and never believe it. Why? If I say the time of rest is now and say to you to let God have control and rest in Him, but don’t believe God is big enough to handle any and all of my problems, why bother? What is the point of anything without belief? If I learn 2+2= 4 and don’t believe it, what is the point?
THE TIME OF REST IS NOW. Believe it, accept it.
A week or so ago I was soaring. Life was gorgeous and I thought “Thank you Jesus for this time of rest!”
Oh, Annie. Did you not listen to what God was saying?
Once again, I was basing my rest on my day-to-day, down-to-earth schedule.
In the strange two-week abyss of nothingness between camp and college, this is what God was teaching me about. Even then with no physical work per se to be done, my heart and mind were full speed ahead. My mind would not let me rest.
Here at Kent, my schedule is so busy I virtually have no time to sleep.
The big issues of my life: a bill for $3400 I don’t have, managing to study for classes, attempting to get involved in activities.
I am learning to let them go. And trusting God to handle what I know I can’t.
And it is a great feeling, to be able to trust completely in the one being that will never let me down. He will NEVER let me down. Wow!
And like I said in my last post it is hard for us, as humans to trust someone to do things for us. But what I realize is that God hasn’t let me down in the past. The last time I had to pay for college He came through, the last time I had my heart damaged, He was there. Even the last time I slept through something important (like how today I slept through my exam) He came through.
I realize now that He will always come through. And that fills me with peace more than anything else. He loves me and He won’t disappoint me or fail me or forget to do anything pertaining to me.
I need to remember Him.
That $3400. Taken care of. Thank you, God.
Classes. Being taken care of as you read. Thank you, God.
Relationships. As we live and breathe. Thank you, God.
Rest is the result of trusting God.
Now the thing is we don’t become inactive when we give things over to God. On the contrary, we become more active. In addition to taking the steps to overcome theses issues; for example, meeting with the people at the financial aid office, talking with the professor, keeping in communication with friends; we add prayer and petition.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6
It is a winning combination. Rest does not equal sitting around on you tush doing nothing. It is in a different plane entirely. You can rest and study or rest and run or rest and go to work. We can have spiritual rest with or without physical rest. True rest is realizing God is playing on a field above ours and sees what is happening and has our best in mind. Rest is relying on God in that way.
We let “something” loom over us.
It gets in our way and blocks us from something greater that could be hovering overhead…
“The LORD your God is with you,
He is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
He will quiet you with his love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17
The Father is rejoicing over you. Why don’t we replace that “something” with God, singing and dancing.
The night I struggled at camp with the question “When will God let me rest?” it was as if God had already wrapped me in His arms. He was holding me tightly to Himself and I was pushing away. Throwing little kid punches that could never really hurt Him, except for tugging at His heart a bit.
Eventually, I grew too tired to push away anymore, and I finally broke. It wasn’t an easy fall and I am sure my cosie can account for it. I didn’t talk for nearly a day, I kept to myself, and got business done. Days like that are dark. But I was able to collapse into God’s arms that had already been holding me tightly and finally feel Him there. Letting go of my stress and anxieties allowed Him to tighten His embrace. I found rest in the arms of my Father. His arms are always there. I found all along He had been loving me. All along …