“Your soul finds rest in Me alone.” After pouring out my soul to the Lord this morning on everything I was thinking and feeling, from friendships to constipation, these words refilled me.
“Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
– Matthew 11:28 –
He doesn’t say rest for your back in this verse. The work on this earth will never fully stop. He’s referring, I firmly believe, to rest for the soul. When I first realized this, spoken by my surrogate uncle and high school math teacher, I almost wept. At this point in my life, my back was sore, my spirit near breaking. Perhaps it was already cracking. Death was at every corner, to the point that each time my mother got a phone call the first response in my mind was “Who now have we lost?” Coupled with this was the natural senior year stresses and the weight of being a ministry kid, which began to feel a heavier and heavier burden as I grew more and more aware of it and the difference between my life and those of my classmates’. When I heard these words, then, I was done, and I knew the load on my back was nowhere near letting up. But now, spoken from the voice of one outside the situation, someone I loved dearly, looked up to, and knew I could trust wholeheartedly, I had the assurance that in the midst of this chaos there would be rest.
Fast forward a few years, and that storm is a mere memory and testimony. Whenever I read that verse now, I hear it in Uncle Don’s voice in an 8:00 AM math class, but now pertaining to less back-breaking worries. With it I sense His whisper:
“I will take care of the one you are praying for.”
“I created time- don’t you think I can stop it long enough for you to be with Me this morning?”
“Have I ever not taken care of one of your needs?”
Our peace ought never be in the circumstance around us, but only in who He is.
“The God of old is your dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms. He drives out the enemy before you and commands, ‘Destroy!'”
– Deuteronomy 33:27 –
In this season of simplicity, painful memories remember to arise. Our minds are often so brutal to wander exactly where we wish they wouldn’t when we forget to purposefully occupy them elsewhere. But that is when He commands, “Destroy!”
“He lets me lie down beside green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters.”
– Psalm 23:2 –
“I am at rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him.”
– Psalm 62:1 –
Before, and in the beginning of, that awful storm I often refer to on here, I would tend to invalidate my own feelings because my situation was still so much better than those of the ones my parents would counsel. In the middle of the season, I realized that no, mine are just as valid. A broken heart is a broken heart, whether it was a twig or a sledgehammer that broke it. However, now that I’m past that season, I’ll catch myself being so relaxed in this time of rest that I will forget to bring my little cares to the Lord and watch as He deals with them. Instead they pile inside, only to spew out all over Jonny at one wrong word, and I miss the blessing of watching my God work. This morning, I finally let the ink flow with every care, no matter how petty they feel. Within fifteen minutes, He met one of the requests. My challenge to you then, dear reader, is to remember in the light what you learned in the dark. The lesson which was total openness and dependance on the Lord for me is likely something different for you. Hold onto it, remember it. And should you still be in the midst of your storm, take heart. Rest is waiting for your soul to take hold of.
“But let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them shout for joy forever. May You shelter them, and may those who love Your name boast about You. For You, Lord, bless the righteous one; You surround him with favor like a shield.”
– Psalm 5:11-12 –