Thursday, September 27, 2012

Rest for Weary and Burdened Souls

Sometimes we can be in such a hurry to get to a peaceful end, when we finally arrive there we are too worn out to enjoy it. Then we get frustrated, even angry, that we cannot enjoy the time of peace created—a vacation or respite from the strains of life. Sometimes we let the chaos endure because we have no energy left to stop its vicious momentum. Sometimes we just don’t have the energy left to battle with the fierce gusts that batter against us, weathering our resilience. Sometimes it seems easier to concede.
I have often come back to this pattern of living, cursing the sense of sickening déjà vu that reminds me how far I may have strayed from God’s designated rest. Having come to a point in life where family and work and volunteer obligations all collide, and sometimes it seems never-ending, I have run dangerously short on resources for sustaining it all. A deadening fatigue ensues as deeper into the cesspool I seem to go.
But, of course, I, in my own strength, have forgotten how to draw on the light and easy yoke of the Lord Jesus:
“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”
~Matthew 11:28 (NRSV)
Finding Rest En Route
Life is stressful. Anyone pretending it isn’t is deluded. Nowhere in life do we get to escape into a wonderland of peace with any sense of finality. We need a way of operating that helps us enjoy the rest en route, each day.
Being conscious of our encroaching fatigue is the critical thing. All we need do, then, is act on the suggestion of God to find even a moment’s space; the more habitual our acceptance of rest, the better.
The build-up of frustration, and our propensity for anger, should be vital clues.
At recognition of these notes of psychological dissonance God will invite us to use our logical mind to make an important decision. Brought to the precipice God is pushing us to choose for rest or choose to continue the madness in our own strength.
Finding rest en route is as simple as choosing to obey God in our weakness; to draw upon divine strength is the simple but courageous decision to simplify, focus and overcome. Jesus has taught us the way.
***
Sometimes we can be in such a hurry to get to a peaceful end, when we finally arrive there we are too worn out to enjoy it. It’s better to find rest every day along the way; rest for the weary and burdened—Christ’s strength for our weakness.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.

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