Did you know that rest is God-given? It is! God never intended us to overextend ourselves to the point of exhaustion. God instituted rest from the very beginning of time. When He created the world, the Bible says He took time to rest from all His work. (Genesis 2:2) Today’s verse tells us, “It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep.” (Psalm 127:2 KJV)
In today’s world, it seems that everyone is on high speed, running around, agendas filled to the brim, working themselves into oblivion, non-stop. Some executives drive their employees to work more hours than is reasonable, sometimes even from home, taking away valuable family time from their employees. This leads to exhaustion, health issues, broken families, and the list goes on. The Psalmist tells us that it is vain to run ourselves ragged and reminds us that God gives us sleep…He gives rest! That rest, when we rest in Jesus, brings peace to our lives.
Physical rest is important. It keeps us from succumbing to illness, physically and mentally. God did not create us to run non-stop 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. He instituted the Sabbath to give us a day to rest from the week’s busyness. Physical rest is important, but there is also Spiritual rest.
Spiritual rest is what brings us peace…peace of mind, peace of spirit, and peace that gives us strength amid circumstances that upset our lives. The 23rd Psalm is a picture of that rest. Psalm 23:2 tells us the Shepard makes us lie down in green pastures…that’s a picture of rest, of peace, of releasing all our cares to the Shepard (Jesus). Where do we find that rest? In God! “And it will be in the day when the Lord gives you rest from your pain and turmoil and harsh service in which you have been enslaved,” (Isaiah 14:3 NASB1995)
There is also emotional rest. We were never meant to carry the burdens some of us carry. There are things in this world that are way too heavy for us to bear. We must remember that we are to give those things to Jesus. He is our burden-bearer. When worry has us so worked up that we cannot sleep at night, the solution is to give those worries to Jesus, and sleep, sweet sleep, will overtake us and bring peace to our souls. Romans 8:6 says, “For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace,” Relinquishing the cares of this world brings life and peace! Taking time out of our busy lives to rest, physically and spiritually, gives us a renewed sense of purpose, revitalizes us, and sets us on a path of victory and strength. Jason Gray’s song, “Sparrows” talks about resting from the cares and anxieties of this world, stating that God takes care of the sparrows, He will also take care of us.
We are to allow that peace to rule in our lives. Colossians 3:15 says, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.” When we rest in Christ and allow His peace to rule us, we can be assured that everything doesn’t depend on us but on God!
Are you struggling today with circumstances beyond your control? Does it seem like the hamster wheel just keeps running you ragged and there is no way off? Rest! Take it to Jesus and allow Him to give you blessed sleep (rest) that will energize you, body, and soul! He alone can bring you peace!