REST By: Patsy Weiser

Are you tired, stressed out, and frustrated? This usually indicates that we are trying to handle our lives without God’s help. In this day and age, we live fast-paced hectic lives with more on our plates than we can handle. Definitely more than we can handle without the rest God can provide.

In Matthew 11: 28-29 Jesus said, “Come to me all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” What was He talking about? We can come to Jesus by praying and studying the Bible. Through His Word, He will teach us the things we need to know to find the rest for our souls (which is our mind, will and emotions).

When God created the world and all of creation, He designed it perfectly. He did not leave anything unattended. He knew that at times we would feel this way. That is why after He finished creating all things, He rested. Yes, even God rested. In Genesis 2: 2,3 it says, “ On the seventh day God had finished his work of creation, so he rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy because it was the day when he rested from all his work of creation.” I am sure that He did not really have to rest because the Bible says that God never slumbers or sleeps. However, He did it to show us by His example that we need one day each week to revitalize ourselves. Also one of the ten commandments states in Exodus 20: 8-11, “Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. You have six days each week for your ordinary work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your livestock, and any foreigners living among you. For in six days the Lord made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day he rested. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.”

This commandment was not meant to restrict us, but lovingly given to benefit our well-being. God also created night in which to sleep. Our bodies function best when we are well rested. How amazingly awesome that everything was taken into account and provided for so that we can live healthy, productive lives. When we try to live outside of this framework is when our problems start.

Take an inventory of your activities for the week. Do you set aside time for God and for rest? If not, give it a try. Take Sunday off to attend church and then spend the rest of the day relaxing - take an afternoon nap. It is amazing what it will do for that tired, stressed, and frustrated feeling.

(Bible verses taken from The New Living Translation)