I’ve been blessed with a great capacity for sleep. I can fall asleep at night almost as soon as my head hits the pillow, even in the middle of a conversation - as my husband will testify! However, on the rare occasions when I wake in the night and have difficulty sleeping, I find the following day can be quite a struggle. I lack energy and become easily irritated or impatient. This is all because I haven’t had the rest that I needed, and I find it harder to live as I should.
God has created us to need rest. He Himself rested on the seventh day after creating the world, thereby instigating a pattern for us of six days of work, followed by one of rest (Genesis 2:2-3). And in the beginning, when He created light and separated it from the darkness, he created a pattern for each day: ‘There was evening, and there was morning – the first day’ (Genesis 1:5). The Hebrew day therefore begins with the evening, so that each day starts with rest, followed by the activity of the daytime, rather than the other way round.
This is a picture of how the LORD wants us to live our lives: all of our activity should come out of a place of rest in Him. The problem is we often go into activity and busyness without resting in Him. This means we can be doing things in our own strength, and then we wonder why we’re unproductive and easily tired! Today’s scripture clearly states, however, that there’s a place of rest for the people of God. This is where we let go of all our striving, and allow Him to work in us and through us. It’s only as we do this that we’ll be truly living our lives in the way God wants, and in the benefit of all that He has for us.
Let’s make sure that each of us enters God’s rest – a place where, even in the midst of our busy lives, we can be still in His presence, not doing things in our own strength, but allowing Him to work in us and through us.
Prayer: Lord, I’m sorry for the times when I’ve operated out of my own strength, without allowing You to work in me and through me. I want to enter Your rest and cease from all my striving. Please help me to do this. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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