“…And I will give you rest from all your enemies.” 2 Samuel 7:11
The word rest draws many images in our minds and the Webster Dictionary defines it as “sleep…minimal functional and metabolic activities…freedom from activity or labor…a state of motionlessness…and so on.” However, the definition in The New Testament Greek describes rest with words such as “cessation” and “refreshment”. There is a quote from J. Patrick: “here (in Matthew 11:29), the contrast seems to be to the burden imposed by the Pharisees. Christ’s rest is not a rest from work, but IN work. Not the rest of inactivity but of the harmonious working of all the faculties and affections of will, heart, imagination, and conscience, because (he) has found in God the ideal sphere for satisfaction and development.” Our need to rest is different than we thought. Our need is to be in Him who gives us rest inside our soul. True rest can only be Rest in the Lord!
Lasting rest is so rare, especially in our worlds but the answer to “true rest” resides right here in our verse and in so many verses throughtout the Bible. It is He who provides us with rest, it cannot be provided in any other person, place or thing. Unbelief and unfaithfulness can cause us to be restless. When we reach the point in our lives when we relinquish all to Christ and give Him sole trust we find that elusive true rest. We won’t strive anymore, because we are already in Him, in His rest. Rest, faith, belief are all based on our trust in Him. The question I ask myself today is…do I really trust the Lord today, trust Him alone to provide the comfort and love that I so crave? Restlessness is part of human nature but when we come to know who we are in Christ, we become satisfied. True rest requires work but the work is His, not only did He die for our sins but He continues to do the work for us to achieve that elusive rest for our souls.