Some days rest seems like an impossible promise. From the time my feet hit the floor in the morning till my head hits the pillow at night, my days are full of work obligations, feeding my family, and being taxi driver, counselor, tutor, and parent all in one. I cross one item off my to-do list only to add two more and marvel at how dirty dishes manage to breed in the sink overnight.
When my life feels chaotic and out of control, I remind myself that God promises rest for his people. God instituted the Sabbath while Israel wandered in the wilderness during the Exodus. God provided enough manna—food—for the people for each day. The manna couldn’t be stored. It had to be gathered as it appeared every morning. Yet on the sixth day, God told the people to gather enough for two days. The seventh day—the Sabbath—was meant to be a day of rest.
Rest was a luxury for most people in the ancient world. Only the very wealthy had the ability to rest. Slaves and common laborers—most of society—had to work each day to get food for that day. If you didn’t work, you didn’t eat. God wanted his people to live differently. He wanted them to know that their true source of security wasn’t their ability to work or the amount of grain they had stored in their barns. Their true source of security was him.
God still offers us rest. Rest is only possible in the presence of trust, and God invites us to trust him with all our concerns. We can rest because we know we are not the ones who keep the world spinning. Our lives will not fall apart because we take a moment to pause. God, Creator and Sustainer, is sovereign. We can trust him to provide for every need and every moment.
Today, give yourself permission to enter God’s rest. Find time for a sacred pause as you celebrate God’s presence. Give your worries and concerns over to him. God is with you, holding your world together. Trust him and enter his rest.
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Leigh is the author of RENEWED: A 40-Day Devotional for Healing from Church Hurt and for Loving Well in Ministry. A pastor’s wife, mother of three, writer, and speaker, she is passionate about helping women find their places in God’s great story.