Rest… in ME

Sometimes, life doesn’t afford us a place to rest. The clearest, sky-blue day can feel more like a cold, bitter night, simply because there is no place for the soul to find its rest.

Rest. And the days aren’t getting any better. Lately, and more often than not, I find myself saying to myself and others, “I just can’t keep up with what’s happening in the world today. You know, the frequency of the stuff that’s going on right now? Just can’t keep up anymore. It’s all too fast! ISIS, Ebola, news of earthquakes, wars…”

Rest. Seriously! Do you ever look up at the sky, once in a while, just to see what’s  there? Just to see who’s doing what, trying to figure out who’s trying to take control of this world, right now? Is anybody in control over this whole mess?

And you don’t have to look out across the rest of the world to see the brokenness. One day, I want to see the billions of stories of personal brokenness, that ought to be told, get told; just so their owners know that someone is listening, that they are not alone. But what about just a little moment of rest from it all?

“Life is not fair!”

Maybe it seems that way. Could anyone find rest for their soul… when the people you thought most loved you betray you and your body… when the government you thought would protect you does nothing to aid you in your darkest hour against those who would stand above you as your enemy… how are you meant to find rest in that? Will we ever find rest for our souls in this darkness we call home? Was this journey always meant to be this painful, hopeless, messed up? Can’t I just give up and end it all here? Or is hope, and faith, and love something still worth believing in? Is someone listening?

I’m glad you asked. Yes. Someone is listening. Someone is going to tell your story. Isn’t that the beginning of true justice? Someone is going to give you rest. It seems easier to talk about rest than it is to talk about love, I think because love is such an abstract concept for most of us to try to grasp and understand.

“How would you know the beauty of life, without knowing the utter darkness that is possible in this life?”

Someone does love you, is listening to you and is now standing at the feet of your door, offering you a rest that is as timeless as the first light to stretch its path across the universe; as ancient as the first wind that ever stirred and caressed its way over the blades of grasses on the surface of the earth.

That rest is here. It is life. It is eternal. That rest can be part of your story and the relief in your relentless personal journey. I believe it is one of two end points of all that is broken and dark in this world. But will it be your final resting place? Yes, only if you take that rest from the one who offers it. The only sacrifice is that you leave your pride and ego at the door, and that you take it simply in all humility and thankfulness, and only in faith in the one who began a good work in you from the foundations of the universe. He knew your story then, he knows your story now. Will you take this rest from the one who loved you and gave his life to save you, so that you could have this everlasting peace and rest in your soul?

Rest. Don’t try so hard to work your way to a better place. You can’t earn it. Don’t try. Simply rest in Him.

Matthew 11:28-30
“Come unto me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and you shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Rest.

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“Giving it your all…”

If we’re going to give it our all, while our time on this planet is limited,  then it may as well be thoughtful, planned and lasting, however fleeting this world may be.

“Sex, drugs and… secret knowledge?”

I mean, we have none but ourselves to be accountable to, when all is said and done, right? Well, no, there is more at stake than that. If we live life without making a few basic confessions, I don’t think we can readily admit that life is an opportunity that has been given to us for a reason. Yes, a reason!

“Satisfaction, security and… spiritual well-being?”

I would suggest that we begin by seeing life as an unknown journey. Admitting that, however, does not mean that there are some things that we can be heartily passionate about along the way. When we can look back at ourselves and accept our faults and flaws, and that we are ever learning on this road called life, we can then begin to appreciate that everyone else is on the same boat. We’re in this together.

“Attitude, passion and… honest searching.”

Life is an opportunity we must never take for granted. Why settle for second best, when you only have one chance at it? And, is the end goal simply the pursuit of happiness and self-satisfaction, or gaining a higher level of knowledge, or even the very noble aim of building a future for the benefit of yourself and the rest of humanity? If we are never attaining the whole truth (in a state of perpetual learning) until our time is up, then can we ever really stake a claim to the absolute truth? I think a most important lesson for everyone on this journey is that we are human, we are imperfect, we do have our moments of fragility. It most certainly helps to acknowledge that everyone’s end goal can and will shift. At least, though, let us encourage one another to seek out that which is beneficial to the soul and human spirit. Let’s adopt a spirit of honest searching, coupled with passion and humility. Let’s be thoughtful and encouraging, and seek for that which is lasting.

“Give it everything you’ve got – and aim for the everlasting!”