“And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.” (Genesis 2:2-3)
“See! For the Lord has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you on the sixth day bread for two days. Let every man remain in his place…So the people rested on the seventh day.” (Exodus 16:29-30)
“There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.” (Hebrews 4:9-10)
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)
Why do I find rest to be such an elusive thing? God created it; He commands it; He equips us for it. So why do I rebel against rest?
In order to truly rest, I must learn to truly trust God. As long as I go on believing that I have the answers and that I must have my hand in every pot, I will never learn to rest. Until I come to see my contributions as worthless, I will never learn to rest. As long as I think I’m strong, I will never learn to rest. Instead I will charge ahead–thinking that my input is necessary.
In reality, God doesn’t need me. No one else needs me. If I weren’t here, the earth would continue to spin. The church would continue on. Love Memorial Hall would make it through. Sunday School material would be found somehow; the Nursery would be run somehow; the Middle School girls would somehow make it through; the FoodNet would still get done. They don’t need me.
Until I come to see the worthlessness of my flesh and my utter dependence on God, I will never rest and nothing will ever be accomplished through my life. My righteousness is but filthy rags, my striving is for nothing, my serving is only a distraction. It is in my weakness, rather, that Christ is made manifest in my life.
So, I must die to myself–recognizing that in my flesh dwells no good thing. I must recognize the great power of God available to every believer–without my help. I must take God at His ord–and rest. And what a rest that is. For when I rest and in my weakness die to my flesh, God’s power is made manifest through my life. And I am most satisfied when God is most glorified.