Creating Caring Communities That Transform Lives
Creating Caring Communities That Transform Lives
Creating
Caring
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Creating Caring Communities That Transform Lives
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Monday, June 24, 2013 @ 5:00:00 AM - Written by Doug Hignell -

As I write this blog post, I'm ending a time of withdrawing alone for several days to rebuild margins and regain a sense of "rest" that I managed to lose as a result of many stressors this past week. As I prepare to re-enter my normal routine, I feel uneasy as I wonder if I can maintain this sense of "rest" as my pace of life ramps back up. How I long to enter the 24/7/365 rest that God challenges us to enter in Hebrews 3 and 4!

 

To truly enter into an ongoing Sabbath rest requires the realization that we can't live the Christian life but it is Christ living in us. We struggle with rest because we work to achieve what has already been accomplished.

I'm not talking about simply withdrawing for a block of time - though that’s certainly important - but, instead, the concept of entering God's rest 24/7/365 as a way of life. True Sabbath rest occurs when a believer rests "from his works, as God did from His" (Hebrews 4:4, 10). The good news is that we can rest, as well, for the God who lives in rest lives in us through his Holy Spirit.

 

Very few of us, though, ever enter into this state of rest. However, God makes clear in these chapters that this ongoing rest is still available to us. Our challenge, then, is to yield -- on a moment-by-moment basis -- to the God who loves us so deeply that we can trust him completely, even in our darkest times. Intimacy with Jesus is the only means through which we can enter into and remain in such a state of rest.

 

Hebrews 4:2 makes clear that it takes faith to enter God's into rest. The Amplified Bible describes the word "faith" this way: "faith (the leaning of the entire personality on God in absolute trust and confidence in His power, wisdom and goodness)."

 

This brings to mind an image of placing our hands on a wall and leaning against it, with our feet as far from the wall as possible. If the wall moves or falls, we fall, too. That’s how completely God desires that we rest in him and depend on him to supply everything we need.

 

Bob Warren at www.lifeonthehill.org has written an excellent Bible study on Hebrews, in which he offers us a challenge: "Oh, to rest!!! No more working for God, but watching God perform His work through us (Philippians 2:13; 1 Corinthians 15:10) as we face the variables of our day. No more involving ourselves with busyness to the point of exhaustion, but spending time with Him, just Him, for the purpose of knowing His heart. When we seek His heart, we have the awesome privilege of watching Him change lives through us - while we rest."

 

If the concept of entering rest as a more permanent state intrigues you, I would encourage you to spend time this week meditating on Hebrews 3 and 4 and make pursuing an ongoing Sabbath rest a primary focus. You will be enriched.


 

 
Comments
I am reminded of how Jesus removed Himself from the crowds throughout His ministry life. It is interesting to note that I am currently on a 2 month break from work (I'm a school teacher.), and the PACE of the day is slower in many ways, but I still let the "Hurried Life" press in around me. I need to remove myself to a quiet place. Like Christ did. I am going to check out the lifeonahill.org recommendation. Thanks.
Tim Hull @ 11:22:00 AM 6/24/2013
Tim, thanks for commenting on my post. I appreciate your friendship of 20+ years. May you find a new state of rest this summer and be able to maintain it when school starts back up.
Doug Hignell @ 8:26:00 AM 7/4/2013

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