A Guest Blog by Becky Meyerson
“You will never be able to outrun the rested.”
This statement from the pulpit one Sunday landed right in my heart. That is what I was longing for!
To run in life and pursue the purposes of God with energy.
But at the moment—I was tired.
My husband and were spending the month in Florida at his parents’ home. And as much as I was enjoying the warm weather, I was longing for home and my own bed.
My daily routines were disrupted, and I felt so exhausted that I was needing a nap every afternoon.
Part of the problem was that I was needing to get back to healthy physical routines (that seem to be forgotten when I am on vacation)!
But, more importantly, I needed to examine the ongoing restfulness of my soul and spirit.
What I needed was to experience true rest—God’s rest. A rest that only He can give and a rest that brings strength and restoration to our bodies, souls, and spirits.
The Need for God’s Rest
There is a God-created dance between our bodies, souls, and spirits.
In His mysterious ways all three are connected and in step with one another.
- When we are physically tired, our patience with others is short, and our spiritual ears are not fully tuned to God’s voice.
- If our souls are restless, our aches and pains are heightened, and our hearts feel disconnected from God’s presence.
- Whenever we are not right with God, the emptiness of our sin haunts us, and our strength is sapped. (Psalm 51 and Psalm 32)
Then 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. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30 NLT)Jesus invites us to join our lives with His and experience His perfect rest.
The trials of life are heavy and shove us under a “yoke” which makes our bodies, souls, and spirits weary. When we try to carry this yoke on our own, it only leads to stress, anxiety and weariness.
But Jesus offers another way—a better way.
Instead of trying to carry this yoke on our own, we can come beside Him and team up with HIS yoke as He works in our lives. And as we learn and follow His ways, we find the true meaning of rest.
He wants us to hear Him say, “I know. I care. Trust me. I will watch over you and I will give you rest.”
Jesus says – You are under a yoke which makes you weary: Shake that off and try mine. (Matthew Henry)
3 Way to Experience God’s Rest for your Soul
We CAN let go of burdens and trials that are keeping us from rest and move away from thoughts that are creating stress and restlessness.
Here are three ways to experience God’s rest for your soul:
1. To Experience God’s Rest—Let Go Of The Past
You may not be experiencing God’s rest because you have not allowed Jesus to resolve your past.
Bring every sin, disappointment, betrayal, and rejection to Him. There is forgiveness and healing ready for you to receive and walk in.
Once you have laid every burden at the foot of the cross, don’t let the enemy of your soul harass you. It is dealt with and gone! You can press forward and run into the abundance of God.
Forget the past and fasten your heart on the future.
“I don’t depend on my own strength to accomplish this; however, I do have one compelling focus: I forget all of the past as I fasten my heart to the future instead.” Philippians 3:13 (TPT)
2. To Experience God’s Rest—Don’t Worry
Worry and anxiety will debilitate you!
Dwelling on difficulties and troubles; fretting about people, places and things; panicking over actual or potential problems will exhibit restlessness in your body, soul, and spirit and hinder you from experiencing God’s rest.
But thankfully, God provides a solution for worry and it is found in Philippians 4:6. In it, the instruction is clear–PRAY.
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done.” Philippians 4:6
Now is the time to intentionally redirect your mind from worry to prayer. Don’t let toxic emotions rule your life!
3. To Experience God’s Rest—Stop Self-Striving
We can strive to do everything we can think of to try and fix difficult situations in life—and still be without peace or solutions. The Bible gives us another option.
Instead of striving—choose to be still.
God invites us to surrender our worry, let go, and relax. He invites us to quiet our hearts and minds and stop desperately trying to solve things on our own.
As we do so, we can experience God’s rest.
It is like sinking into a comfortable chair with a warm cup of tea and letting all the strain and struggle leave. When you do this, it opens the door for God to move and rest will settle in you.
“Cease striving and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10 (NASB)
Rest is a gift from God, but also a decision we can choose to make.
We can choose to experience God’s rest by speaking to our souls to release and let go of emotional pain and sorrow.
We can choose to take captive thoughts that stem from worry!
Lean your spirit close to God and commit to make the following part of your daily life:
• Let go of the past and fasten your heart to the future.
• Leave your cares and anxieties at the feet of Jesus.
• Be still before God.
“Relax and rest, be confident and serene, for the Lord rewards fully those who simply trust in Him.” Psalm 116:7 (TPT)
– Becky Meyerson
Becky Meyerson is a 60-something wife, mom, Nana, writer, teacher, organic garlic grower, and Jesus follower. She loves to point people to the Word of God through writing and speaking and her prayer is that the Word of God will change His people from the inside-out.