I have a house guest who just will not leave. Actually, he was supposed to bring someone else with him when he came, but the other person has been delayed for some time now. My house guest is Exhaustion. Have you ever met him? He comes and never wants to leave. I was hoping Rest would come with him, but Rest has been detained for what seems like an indefinite time.
Over the years, Exhaustion has stopped by my house repeatedly and the only way I can get him to leave is to invite Rest. Rest is very peaceful and likes to avoid confrontation, therefore, he avoids me when Exhaustion is visiting. We may be laughing now at my little story, but honestly, exhaustion is no laughing matter. So many of our days are spent using every moment, afraid of falling behind if we just stop and breath. Life is moving way too fast. There is always something to do and somewhere to go. Even when we try to sleep, our dreams are filled with a list of things left undone.
It is interesting that I find myself reading the 37th Psalm today. In verse 7, David says, “Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him.” No problem David. Yeah, right. David doesn’t walk in my shoes! (I’m really glad I didn’t walk in his shoes either!) There are bills to pay, unending loads of laundry and dishes to be washed, numerous church meetings to attend, classes to be taken, lessons to be prepared, and my list goes on and on. As one can see I have no time to waste. I can’t stop and rest.
If I stopped only with reading verse 7, I would truly miss out on one of God’s blessings. The blessing of true rest. David did more than just say rest in the Lord and wait patiently, he told us how to do it.
- Fret not–Stop worrying
- Trust in the Lord–that means more than believing in Him, it means believing Him.
- Do Good–the best way to ward off stress
- Delight thyself also in the Lord–spend some quality time with Him
- Commit thy way unto the Lord–give Him your life, let Him take control, let Him guide
- Cease from Anger and forsake wrath–the end result is peace of mind
I remember well the years of wrestling my daughter into submitting to nap time. I found the best way was to remove her from her toys and any other thing that would distract her from yielding to rest. As long as she could see her toys, or hear her music, or hear her favorite tv show, or hear the voice of someone she loved, she would wrestle against me. She would push and turn and even cry because I would not let go of her. She was very fretful. But once I got her all by herself with just me, cradling, rocking and singing softly over her she would fall asleep. She trusted me to hold her and protect her while she slept. She delighted herself in the sound of my voice, the cuddling of my arms and the gentle rocking of the chair. Once she was in the right place with all distractions removed, it did not take long until she committed herself to a nap. Her anger and wrath soon dissipated into peaceful sleep.
Just like my daughter, I have to be in the right place with my Father if I want to find that peaceful rest.
I have got to stop fretting over things that I can’t get done. I have got to stop worrying over the things I can do nothing about. I have to trust Him fully before I can rest in His arms. That means I have to do more than believe in Him. I must believe Him. True rest only comes from being in the shelter of the Father’s arms. I have to do good, so my soul will be at rest. When I spend time with Him in His Word, in Prayer, and seek Him in every part of my day, I’ll find strength for my journey. Committing my ways, all that I am, all that I do, and every part of my life to Him means that I trust Him to do what is best for me. I trust Him to take care of all my needs. I trust Him to be my protection and my provision. I can not be full of anger and wrath if I am full of love and hope. Even though my physical body may get tired, there is no need for my spiritual or emotional body to get tired. I can rest in the Lord, knowing He will hold me in His arms and never let me go. So, while Exhaustion fails to leave, Rest can and will come. And tonight I will be sleeping like a baby, held gently and cradled in Daddy’s arms. What a sweet sound it is to hear Him singing over me.
Fret not thyself because of evildoers,
neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.
For they shall soon be cut down like the grass,
and wither as the green herb.
Trust in the Lord, and do good;
so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.
Delight thyself also in the Lord:
and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.
Commit thy way unto the Lord;
trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.
And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light,
and thy judgment as the noonday.
Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him:
fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way,
because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.
Cease from anger, and forsake wrath:
fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.
Father, I pray for the millions who are tired, exhausted from the journey of life. I pray they seek Your arms of love and nestle in and find comfort and rest there. There is peace in Your presence and healing in Your touch. Teach us to rest in You. Help us to commit all our ways into Your faithful hands. Teach us that patients is a virtue and those who wait on You are never disappointed. Help us see that all of our hearts desires are found in knowing You. In Jesus name, Amen.