I've been trying to rest this week because I didn't return from our women's retreat feeling rested physically. In fact, just a couple of hours after I got home I had to go to a wedding. I sat in the back of the church with a few other friends who had done the same...we laughed about rest. (BTW, if you are reading and don't go to our church, our retreat theme this year was Rest.) While physical rest is certainly important, even vital to our physical health, the retreat was really about soul rest. How is our soul at rest even during frantic, hurried, many hat wearing, taking care of all kinds of responsibilities, times?
I spent weeks studying about rest. I planned to rest. I knew the answers in my head for soul rest. Then, once home from the retreat, those things that I struggle with that keep me from resting popped up. That's how it happens. That very thing that I am trying so hard to get -- the lesson I am trying to learn once and for all -- is the one that so easily escapes.
We talked about Elijah at the retreat. How he had seen God do some awesome things. How he was used by God to do some miraculous things. Then, there he was, on the run. Afraid for his life. Tired, worn out, hungry. God supplied his physical needs and then met with him on Mt. Horeb. "What are you doing here, Elijah?" God asked. Poor pitiful me, Elijah replied. Just off a great victory but feeling alone and abandoned.
This is not how I thought it would turn out...
Yet, all God's promises are true. He never said it would be easy but that He would never leave or forsake. He said He gives strength to the weary because He is strong and mighty. DL Moody said, "The Scriptures were given not to increase our knowledge but to change our lives." If I read that God is faithful, that He provides strength, that He alone is my resting place, but do not apply it in my daily life then it's just head knowledge. It's intended purpose, to change my life, is not accomplished. It's my choice to make -- will I rest in Him? Will I trust Him and in His Word?
God repeated the question to Elijah a second time, "What are you doing here, Elijah?" God let him answer, then told him what was really going on. The truth of the matter. Then God told Elijah what to do next.
So, where do I go from here? When the lies that the world is screaming at me seem stronger than the feeling of rest I've got to combat that with the Truth of the Word. Confess those areas that need confession and seek out those promises that apply to what I'm going through right now. As I repeat over and over again the Truth I am able to believe it. And apply it. I place a spiritual marker and know that God is teaching me -- I plan to remember this lesson.
And from here I go out to rest.
Serving the King,