Can We Rest?

How often do we rob ourselves of the rest that God has provided because we want work?

Sometimes we want rest on our own terms rather than God’s terms. And in the process end up with no rest at all. How many of us add “church” as simply another burden to the work that we already have?

Making Excuses for Our Work

How many of us try to make excuses so that our particular work might be considered “legal” to do on the Sabbath when this simply adds to the burdens? Some will theologically hide their desire to work by quoting the Biblical text which states “lawful to do good” when we really mean “lawful to do….” We want to do and thus simply add to our burdens.

Do we have the Sabbath rest that God has provided for us? I am sure many do, but many of us are constantly adding things to our plate and never taking anything away. We have much work, much good work, but it is still work. All of this sticks with us as we enter the supposed rest. Thus instead of uninhibited communion with God and our community (family and larger community) we get added work and burdens. And the amazing thing is that we bring it all on ourselves!!!

Our Identity is Work

It is as if we do not want rest…we are telling God, keep your rest, I want to work!! Or, I am too busy to rest. How often do I do that when God is offering the rest that comes in communion and trust with the Most High. Instead I tell God take your rest, I want to work. In American society where we place a premium on work, we have a blackberry cell phone, beeper, and a laptop. And we never slow down. Perhaps our identity is too tied to busyness. Perhaps the first step to rest is in realizing that we are more than what we do!!! Rest can only come from letting go of our desire and need to “do.”

If we will rest according to the commandment, we must set aside our false need to “do” and live in our real need to “be.” God help us to rest.

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