A year ago, I was in the most chaotic week of my life. I was in the process of moving, full-time graduate school, enjoying the last week of school with my 5th grade students, looking for a job, and preparing to walk down the aisle to say, “I do.” I remember telling Daniel how excited I was for the week of rest that would follow. Fast forward a few months and I was having a similar conversation, “I cannot wait until graduate school is done so I can rest.”
It seems that I tend to fall into the dangerous habit of equating business with godliness. Filling up my calendar to the max leaving little time to rest and longing for the next weekend or vacation. Even Jesus, who was busy with His Father’s business, took time away to rest in the Father.
Our hearts long for rest.
As we begin to head towards normal again, one thing I am thankful for during this pandemic is the opportunity to rest. I am not simply talking about physical rest (though I am thankful I finally have an infant sleeping through the night). Over the past few months, I have constantly been reminded of my need to rest in Him. My prayer has mirrored that of the Psalmist:
“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more than the watchman for the morning, more than the watchman for the morning.” (Psalms 130: 5-6)
When sin entered the world so did chaos, stealing the peace that God originally intended for humanity. Remember how the Israelites longed for rest. They spent years in slavery. God freed them. Then once again sin entered the scene, and as a result they were left wandering for 40 years. Imagine how exhausting that must have been. They must have been physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausted, but God promised them a place of rest (Joshua 1:13). As death and injustice loom in our world, our souls wait for the eternal rest that God has promised us.
As I wait, I am reminded of Jesus’ promise in Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Though we mourn the brokenness that plagues our world, we still find refuge in the Lord. There we can rest. We hold onto the hope that one day our souls will rest with the Lord for eternity.
We are all eager to return to normal. My prayer is that as the business of life begins again, we will intentionally make time to rest in the Lord so that our souls will not grow weary.