I’ve written a lot in 2020 about rest. Stillness. Quiet.
But I was struck by something when sitting in my car waiting to go into my friend’s church yesterday morning. There, in front of me, was a building emblazoned with “Rest, Relax, Restore.”
It was a spa.
Now, I’m a big fan of spas. I’m sure I’ve written several blog posts from my favorite one in Houston.
But what truly is rest? And do you actually leave transformed after a massage? That was the juxtaposition I sat with there in my car.
I had also just received my morning devotional from Christine Caine entitled The Promise of God’s Rest. It’s probably why the sign struck me. Caine referenced Hebrews 4 and the SIX references made to rest in the first 11 verses of that chapter. In part, Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience…
It got me thinking about the ultimate purpose of rest.
In a culture that is rushing around like crazy, unable to do all the things we have on our to do list (I know, I’m chief among them), we’re craving rest. An extra hour to sleep in. A weekend retreat. A massage.
But that will not bring us deeply restorative soul rest.
It’s a bandaid over a gaping wound.
What we need is soul rest. The rest that only God can provide. God’s rest gives us a deep peace and healing.
And not rest for rest’s sake. Rest that compels us, propels us, to do His work that He’s preordained for us.
The verse in Hebrews 4 right after the 11 verses on rest? For the word of God is active and alive. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit…
It’s action. Rest gives us what we need to act. Because we were not created to sleep in and get massages. We were created to do His work. Reflect His glory. Shine His light. Go into all the world.
That’s exhausting work. Pushing back darkness results in some rough battlefields. Which is why He calls us to rest. But to rest IN HIM. And then to go. To act. To change the world.