Best Rest

 

Best RestIn a world where tired is the best word to describe our condition, we need to look to the Scriptures for insight into tapping into God’s inexhaustible grace for an exhausted world.

“I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him” (Psalm 62:1).

“Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him” (Psalm 62:5).

Think for a moment about all the ways you seek to find rest for your weary soul. To be sure, sleep is the most obvious way to find rest when we are tired. We also seek our rest in a variety of “distractions” that draw our attention from reading a good book or listening to music, to engaging in a hobby or our recreation, to watching a favorite television show or movie. The list, of course, is endless. Yet, the Bible tells us there is a better way to get the rest we so desperately crave and need. The “best rest” is only to be found in God. The problem with this “best rest” is found in the fact that this is the one place we have a tendency to look last.

 

Recharge the batteries

When we seek our rest in God, we find a rest that is refreshing, rejuvenating, and restorative. God meets us in our place of deepest need and guides us into a rest that can only be found in Him. Saint Augustine of Hippo wrote in his Confessions, “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find rest in you.” And that came from a man who spent years in a desperate search for fulfillment through excessive pleasures and false religions that left him weary beyond words. You see, the Creator of the universe knows what is best for everything He created, and that includes you and me. He knows exactly the kind of rest we need to recharge the “batteries” to do all that God is calling us to do.

 

Trust God

The psalmist could seek his rest in God alone because He knew it was God who had given him both his salvation and his hope. His trust in God translated into a rest that could be found in no other way. He knew God was in control of all things great and small, including his schedule and work load. He knew God always gave him the perfect amount of time to do all the things He had called him to do. Do you? If you find yourself with too much on your plate, it is simply because you have put too much on it.

In reading the gospel accounts of the life of Jesus, we find Him often retreating to spend time alone with God. Jesus knew that in order for Him to do all He intended to do, in such a short period of time, He would have to balance His work with His rest, and He knew the “best rest” would only be found on the other side of time alone with God.

“Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray” (Mark 1:35).

“One day soon afterward Jesus went up on a mountain to pray, and he prayed to God all night” (Luke 6:12).

 

Seek rest

So, when was the last time you got up very early, while it was still dark, to pray? How about an all-nighter on your knees? Jesus shows us the key that unlocks the door leading to a life of the “best rest” on this side of the grave. In addition to prayer, we have God’s Word. Many people tell me that they like to curl up with a good book when they are seeking a time of rest and relaxation. That’s a good thing to do. But there is one thing even better…making that “good book” the Good Book that is alive and active and life giving to all who spend time marinating in it and meditating on it.

So how are you doing in the area of seeking the “best rest” God has to offer? Make no mistake, the “best rest” God offer’s us is the bridge that closes the gap between the life we are called by God to live and the life we are actually and exhaustively living. This is the gospel. This is grace for your race. Never forget that.

 

Tommy Boland is a senior pastor of Cross Community Church in Deerfield Beach. He blogs regularly at

tommyboland.com.

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