Does it seem as if your life has become too busy? Is every moment occupied with details, and, at the end of the day do you still have too many unchecked boxes left on your “to do list”? If so, it is time to slow down and find the place called REST!
More than ever, people are concerned about the growing demands on their time, which is taking an emotional toll on their well being. Statistically, stress is on the rise among children and adolescents. As a nation and as individuals, adults are stressed out about all kinds of things, including relationships, career, finances, family problems, loss of a job, unexpected health problems and a host of other things. Any change only adds to their anxiety.
People of all ages feel pushed to the limit as they try to cope with the pressures of life. They long for a day in the future when they will have the finances for their dream vacation to some exotic destination to enjoy the “trip of a lifetime” — an event they have been planning for years. In the interim, they settle for an occasional day or two away from work, hoping for a temporary reprieve from a lifestyle that is emotionally overwhelming. Yet, nothing provides the lasting rest they seek.
Regardless of what life looks like today, the comforting words of Jesus call us out of our busy lifestyles and emotional distress to a place of rest. Jesus said, “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” (Matt. 11:28-30, NKJV).
The Christian life begins with and is based upon faith in God’s promises. Every promise in the Bible belongs to the follower of Christ, but these promises become ours when we unlock them by faith. When an individual surrenders his life to Christ at salvation, his faith is activated. He doesn’t question whether or not God will forgive his sins. By faith he believes God’s promise that says when we call on the name of the Lord, we will be saved (Acts 2:21) and that, by grace through faith, salvation is a gift of God (Ephesians 2:8).
When it comes to finding the place called rest, however, many rely on self-effort, even though God’s promise of rest is as certain as His promise of salvation (Psalm 62:1, NIV). As a result, they fail to find the rest promised to them. Faith for salvation involves believing and entering into the assurance of a right relationship with God; the same kind of faith applies to rest.
How do we enter this place called Rest? We enter by faith, and faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17). Scripture talks about God’s promises of rest.
“But now the Lord my God has given me REST ON EVERY SIDE; there is neither adversary nor evil occurrence” (1 Kings 5:4).
“My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest” (Exodus 33:14).
“For thus says the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel: ‘In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and confidence shall be your strength’” (Isaiah 30;15).
“Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it” (Hebrews 4:1-2).
Many Christians have not yet entered into this promise of rest, but there is no expiration date on God’s promises! This promise of rest to God’s children is as real today as it has ever been. God is saying that there is a promise that remains for every believer to enter this place called rest. In fact, Scripture states that we should be afraid if we come short or fail to enter this promise called rest. Verse 11 of that same chapter continues with: “Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience.”
God’s promise of rest is yours as a follower of Christ. The decision is yours. Will you go on as usual and hope for the best…or will you make a decision today to believe God’s promise to you? Faith as tiny as a mustard seed can move mountains, bring deliverance, and rescue a lost soul from destruction. That same kind of faith is the key to releasing God’s promises in your life to bring you to a place called Rest.
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