Monday, June 20, 2016
Daily Gratitude Year 4-Day 171: Today, I am grateful for rest .. a secret weapon in our arsenal of God given resources.
I am the oldest child...and the oldest grandchild on my Mama's side. That explains quite a bit about my personality. I have always been the one left "in charge". It is comfortable. Maybe that is why as an adult I have to work to not be bossy. Sometimes I get the "bossy girl" inside of me in check...sometimes she breaks free.
Now, I am okay with someone else being in charge, but if things start to fall apart or chaos ensues, I have a natural burning desire to take control and make an attempt at restoring order...and at times, it only makes things worse. Not pretty, but it is the ugly, naked truth. Stress winds me pretty tight...and I let it.
The Bible has an antidote for this kind of stress...rest! Did you know that part of what makes God's presence so amazing is that it not only provides protection...it gives us rest?
And he said, “My presence will go with , and I will .” -Exodus 33:14
I had to go deeper to understand what is meant by "rest" in this passage. The Hebrew word "nuwach" literally means to sit oneself down to take a rest. The origin of the word lies in taking respite...or taking a breath. Oh my...yes... it means BREATHE! I will give you a rest...I will give you your breath back. Be still my silly, stressed out soul and inhale His deep, fresh breath and exhale peace.
I have observed that it is human nature to fill the empty spaces in our lives with busy-ness when what we really need is rest. True rest. Lack of rest leads to a domino effect of health issues. More rest benefits nearly every aspect of our lives.
Some days, we need to simply stop and breathe in His grace. Deep breaths of his Holy Spirit...and we can exhale his peace.
Ruth 4 tells of Naomi who has lost her husband and two sons to illness. One daughter-in-law stays with her. Two widows with not much of a future. Talk about distress! Yet, God is bigger than any circumstance. Ruth gets a second chance at love with Boaz and her widowed mother-in-law Naomi's broken heart finds new joy at the birth of grandson Obed. The story doesn't end there.
Obed would father Jesse...who would be the father of King David. See how God's "big picture" is way beyond what we can imagine!
Stress and anxiety strangle us. The world craves it. The world thrives on it...but Jesus says..."come". Come when the burden gets to heavy. Come when you can't catch anything but a labored breath. Be restored. Come...and be still in the presence of an almighty God. No earthly trouble is too big and no sea of worry is too deep that He cannot rescue his child.
What an invitation! Everyone welcome. Yoke yourself with Jesus and he will teach and provide rest as needed. Walk in-step with the Holy Spirit and rest under the wing of his protection.
We can rest. We can breath.
I am grateful for rest .. a secret weapon in our arsenal of God given resources.