Give It A Rest
Each Sunday morning, our Community Groups gather throughout Meadowood to fellowship, disciple and share the gospel with others.
This latest Sunday, many of these groups—those working through The Gospel Project materials—focused on God’s covenant with King David from 2 Samuel 7.
At least one group began to consider the implications of rest or sabbath or downtime, which can be incredibly difficult for us to find as our modern day experiences are filled with activity, both mental and physical.
Have we lost what it means to rest?
As the discussion deepened, another Scripture was referenced and read aloud. It’s probably one you are familiar with:
“Be still, and know that I am God.” — Psalm 46:10a
Different translations render the first phrase of that verse differently (“be still”, “stop your fighting”, “cease striving”, etc.), but virtually all of them use the exact same wording for the second part.
This group came up with a paraphrase that seemed to land well: “Give it a rest, and know that I am God.”
Whatever it may be, stop. Pause. Take a breather. Be still.
Whether work is the “it” for you. Or achievement. Or retirement. Or stuff. Or your kids. Or some feeling of significance or importance. Or even ministry. We all have something(s) in us that we need to take a respite from.
We are burdened with work. With making the financial numbers fit. With paying for college. With a diagnosis. With loneliness. With sin. With so much more.
Jesus also reiterates this idea in Matthew 11:28-30:
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
The source of our rest is also the reward of our rest—namely, Christ Jesus. When we still ourselves in His presence, acknowledge His lordship and trust that all of the other things that crowd our minds and hearts will get taken care of, we can truly rest and enjoy it!
But we must follow this up with the right kind of rest, as it’s more than simply flashing our license to lazy. God doesn’t intend for us to (always) lay down and sleep for an entire weekend or refuse to do anything but sit in front of a screen to watch or play.
We need to take time to recharge daily (through something like a quiet time in the Scriptures) and periodically (like a vacation or even weekends). When we do, we reorient our existence to the truth that God has things under control.
For some, rest is experienced best alone. For others, it happens best in the company of friends.
Break from work with something “not work” like reading or a hobby or going for a walk. Take the family on a visit to the other side of OKC just to see what’s over there. Invite some neighborhood friends over for lunch or dinner or dessert or a board game.
Regardless of how you define rest or what your own personal downtime looks like, we’ll do best to soak ourselves in the acknowledgement that God is God (and we are not).
So give it a rest, already.