Tuesday, July 25, 2017

"Let Us Strive to Find Rest"

I’ve been reading about rest in Hebrews 4, studying from different commentaries on this word and its meaning (which is layered). Although the writer seems to be talking about multiple meanings of rest, I’ve been mostly dwelling on this:

“So, then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his” (Hebrews 4:9-10, ESV).

If God, who needs no rest, rested, how could we not follow his lead? So, I asked myself—what does rest mean to me? What does rest look like?

Sometimes it’s being curled up on the couch with a book or watching a movie or show with Howell or sitting on our front porch, watching the barn swallows. But my favorite happy place?


My dad purchased a few hundred acres of land shortly after I graduated from college about an hour away, and this place has become a little oasis for us. There’s always work to be done, something that needs to be maintained—like shredding roads, spraying mesquites or weeds, repairing fences, etc.—but then we play.

And after we play, we sit. On the porch. On the patio. On the back of a tailgate.

The stars are not veiled by city lights, and the only sounds are the crickets and the distant coyote call.

That sounds like “Sabbath rest” to me.

I’ve always loved Psalm 23—“He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul.”

The Lord does it all; I need only follow and submit my heart to His. There’s no other effort.

I actually love the way the writer of Hebrews says, “Let us therefore strive to enter that rest…” (4:11).

Let us work to rest? Let us make an effort to rest?

Seems paradoxical, but it reminds me of Jesus’s words to His disciples: the only work for you to do is believe (John 6:29).

When it’s that kind of effort toward rest, it’s an easy striving.

What about you, my friends? Are you taking time to rest? Do you have a happy place—where your heart finds peace, and your soul is restored?

It’s an effort we’re commanded to make. Let us strive to find rest this week. 

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