Rest! Relax! Refresh yourself and recover your strength! God rested on the seventh day and Jesus had solitary moments of quiet time. God designed us with a need for sleep and quiet. He knows our frame (we are but dust!) and understands our longing to be still in order to recharge.
However, there are reasons why peace and rest may be elusive. When we are in communion with God, peace is within reach. But it isn’t until we lay down our worries and consciously cast all our cares His way that we attain this supernatural rest. We might be standing in His presence, but true peace will elude us if we refuse to surrender and submit to His power.
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28 (NKJV)
“And He said, ‘My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” Exodus 33:14 (NKJV)
“Submit to God and be at peace with Him; in this way prosperity will come to you. Accept instruction from His mouth and lay up His words in your heart. If you return to the Almighty, you will be restored: If you remove wickedness far from your tent.” Job 22:21-22 (NIV)
If there is willful sin in your life you are most likely feeling the toll and weight of it. David wrote several Psalms expressing his pain and exhaustion, the consequences of his unconfessed sin (Check out Psalm 6, 32, 51). Scripture states that peace eludes those living in sin. Without peace, we will have no complete and restorative rest.
“’There is no peace,’ says the Lord, ‘for the wicked.’” Isaiah 48:22 (NKJV)
“Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am faint; heal me, Lord, for my bones are in agony. My soul is in deep anguish.
How long, Lord, how long? Turn, Lord, and deliver me save me because of your unfailing love.” Psalm 6:2-4 (NIV)
“I am worn out from my groaning. All night long I flood my bed with weeping and drench my couch with tears.” Psalm 6:6 (NIV)
“Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord does not count against them and in whose spirit is no deceit. When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night Your hand was heavy on me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer.” Psalm 32:2-4 (NIV)
“But if you fail to do this, you will be sinning against the Lord; and you may be sure that your sin will find you out.” Numbers 32:23 (NIV)
A fear of the Lord is a state of complete awe and respect. This humble attitude provides rest and contentment for believers. There is no good reason why God’s children should live life without the peace that transcends all understanding. Dancing with the devil, who works hard enticing us to rebel against God, hopes to destroy our peace of mind and ability to rest.
“The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble.” Proverbs 19:23 (NIV)
“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.” Psalm 23:1-2 (NKJV)
Maybe you have a worry that needs to be placed at the feet of Christ. Confessing and then submitting your anxiety to Christ will give you rest. If willful sin has enticed you, confession and repentance will be the door that opens to green pastures with still waters of restoration, peace, and rest. Give it all to God. He loves you.