Rest
Zoe Elmore

“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.” Psalm 62:5 (NIV)

Who knew that rest was something to seek after like one would pursue a virtuous quality? After all, aren’t virtues supposed to be difficult and even require heroic action? I consider rest to be passive, a do-nothing kind of thing. What is the value of that in our daily lives, especially in the life of a busy woman?

Rest, like all things, is only good if it is taken in the right measure and at the right time. When I was a singer (in my former years), I learned that a properly placed rest is as effective as any note. By putting rest into practice in our lives, we reap the benefit and value it brings. As women, many of us have forgotten the importance of rest and how to employ the proper placing of the pause.

When people ask how things are going, more often than not the response is, “Busy as usual,” or “There aren’t enough hours in the day to get it all done.”

Why are we so busy and why do many of us feel this way?

I think one reason may be that our society has sold women a false sense of self-worth by connecting our value to our level of busyness. We should ask ourselves the important question found in Galatians 1:10, “Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or God? Or am I still trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

Now please don’t think I am suggesting all women go on permanent rest and take to our beds leaving our responsibilities and families to suffer. Heaven forbid! What I am suggesting is this. When faced with another opportunity to “do” one more thing, “go” to one more event or “host” one more party, resist the urge to immediately throw up your hand and volunteer. Pause and pray, asking the Lord’s direction regarding each matter. Perhaps the Lord has someone else in mind to “fill” the position.

Some women have discovered the secret to living a full yet balanced life. Their busy life is punctuated with periods of rest, and that rest consists of a time of prayer. When I see women who rest in the midst of their busy lives I do not see them frantic and harried like myself. Their spiritual balance allows them to accomplish more with less stress.

Perhaps they have learned to employ the truths found in Matthew 11:29, “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (NIV). Just like farmers hand-crafted a yoke for every work-animal to help and assist them in their work, these women have learned that the Lord’s yoke is perfectly fitted to us in order to assist us in the work He has ordained. And resting is one component of that work. When we are obedient to do the work God has called us to we can experience the joy and benefit of a balanced spiritual life as we utilize the proper place of rest.

Dear Lord, Thank You for reminding me that rest is an important part of spiritual balance. Teach me to seek Your direction as I prioritize my life’s busyness. I want to experience and enjoy the balance of work and rest. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Related Resources:
Breathe: Creating Space for God in a Hectic Life by Keri Wyatt Kent

Do You Know Him?

Visit Zoe Elmore’s blog

God’s Purpose for Every Woman: A P31 Devotional Gen Editors. Lysa TerKeurst & Rachel Olsen

Application Steps:
The next time your life becomes frantic and harried, pause for a time of restful prayer.

Memorize the power verses below and learn the benefits of rest; it will help you achieve balance in your spiritual life.

Reflections:
What can you do to ensure proper rest is a part of your life?

What is the Lord calling you to “give up” as a way of making room for proper rest?

Power Verses:
Genesis 2:3, “And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.” (NIV)

Exodus 33:14 “The Lord replied, ‘My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.’" (NIV)

Hebrews 4:10, “For anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his.” (NIV)

© 2008 by Zoe Elmore. All rights reserved.

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6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The devotional today hits the spot. I've been feeling very stressed in the last few weeks to the point that more abrupt with my children, my body is wound tight, and I'm completely exhausted. I had planned on having today as a day of rest. God knew I needed to read this devotion today to make sure I kept my calendar free. Thank you.

Anonymous Whitney Morton said...

As I read this just now I was lying in bed feeling incredibly selfish for taking a sick day to rest my weary and worn body. Thank you so much for reminding me that it is not selfish to do as the Lord directs - it is selfish to keep doing for the praise and approval of man.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

God's timing always cracks me up! I am leaving today for 3 days of rest at my mothers, All By Myself! My husband is holding down the fort while I'm gone and I'm looking forward to mommy time, especially the "me" in mommy. It's so easy to run constantly and not rest, but I'm a much better mother, wife and friend when I do take time for me. The wisest advice I received about not over committing was to tell people I'll look at my calender, pray and get back to them when asked to make a commitment to something. It gives me time to ask God if it's a task I should undertake and to not give in because I feel pressured. Thanks so much for this timely reminder! I'm off to rest!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is wonderful. I loved it and feel that I am on the right track. God bless you.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this timely reminder! I am learning to say no more often and too slow down and take care of me so I can be a better mommy.

In Him,
Angela
aekm@att.net

Blogger kgriff said...

After 7 weeks of resident children's ministry, I wanted to encourage our staff to rest their heads on the table, relax in a comfy chair, or lay down and not feel like they were doing something forbidden. Your devotion hits the mark perfectly.

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