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Posts Tagged ‘Rest’

Season of Rest

For the past few months, I have been embracing a season of rest in many areas of ministry, particularly my writing. Though difficult, this time has been important to lay all at God’s feet, and to ask for fresh eyes as I look ahead in my journey.

One area I’m exploring in more significant ways deals with how to hold the emphatic promises of God for my life when my experiences continue to be the opposite. A challenge at best, I’m coming to see with deeper peace the reality that while God’s promises over our lives are absolutely true and unchanging, the application of these promises can change from season to season. That which I’ve experienced of a promise in different circumstances remains true, but may not come out in the way I anticipate at a new time and place in my journey.

In times as these,  I’m left with a choice. I can either believe that His promises have ceased or don’t apply in my current state, or I can begin another mysterious adventure to find the expression of His promises in fresh, new ways. While I still struggle a bit, I am trying to follow the latter, again throwing my life upon the alter of God and trusting His heart for my life. In the process, I can sense my faith being stretched and deepened in His ongoing goodness and kindness over my life.

If you find yourself in a similar place, I offer this blessing…”Father, I ask you to draw every person close to your heart where a new season of trusting has blossomed. Open their eyes to your veiw from heaven, and connect their heart to yours where they can begin to understand with greater sensitivity the abiding kind love you have for them and for their journey. Thank You. Amen.”

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The Rest We Need

We’ve all been there. Day after day we awake with our constant companion. It sits on our chest when we lay down, suffocating our experience of peace and hope. In the day, it rides on our shoulder like a backpack full of rocks.  The whispers of its voice become the constant hum in the background of our hearts. Every decision we encounter carries its flavor, as if everything has been contaminated. Our contemplations are fruitless in seeking relief, and to expect a casting off becomes more and more a distant song that plays only to tempt our downcast heart.

Weariness and heart burdens are plagues upon our active, and fast-paced society.  Both  are real and obviously effective, as some days seemed marked by each of them in more ways than others. Over time, we learn to cope with their presence, never really gaining relief, nor expecting a life beyond them. It is here that we embrace the lie – “just move on” everyone says…”it will get better”. But better never comes, at least like we hope for.

Certainly life brings times when we are weakened by the journey and troubled by the burdensome weight we carry, whether self-imposed or received from others. But in spite of this reality, there is another truth that is greater. I wonder if we’ve missed it because we expect to do something ourselves or change the circumstances to gain the rest we seek? What if the answer lies not in something we do, but in someone we lean on?

Digging his feet into the soil of the earth and facing the growing crowds of Palestine, Jesus stood contesting the ways of our realm with the supernatural power of His own. I imagine every face he saw told a story that only he could hear in the deepest sense. Some were filled with joy, and some shared the heart wrenching pain of burdens too great, and tiredness too chronic. Into this tide of discouragement, He spoke…

“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28, NLT)

The answer for our weariness and burdens lies not in doing something different, creating a new environment or even in running away. No, true rest comes in the embrace of a person who cares, loves, and esteems your life. Like you, He too has been weary and burdened by weights. He knows the experience of it at every level of his being – body, soul and spirit. However, it was His own Father’s love that brought the confident rest He sought, and now He offers the same to us.

No experience of weariness or burdens will ever grow stronger than the overwhelming influence and power of Jesus’ presence. He IS life, and His life IS greater. Everything bows before Him, even weariness and burdens. The light He brings reveals that each are only meant to be short-lived, as true life comes with joy, love and peace.

The invitation circles the globe every second. Jesus stands before us, arms opened wide, ready to embrace our tired and troubled hearts. His rest comes not as a answer for our present questions, but as a new vision for our life. We were fashioned to live in and through His rest, even in the midst of difficult times.

“Come to Me,” He calls to our hearts. Will we respond?

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