Saturday, July 31, 2010

Sabbath Rest

Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.
-John Wesley

Usually that expresses my passing days fairly accurately. What matters in my life is Jesus and loving people. I continually work toward ruthlessly eliminating hurry from my life and replacing it with the peace that passes understanding. We all have so many choices in our management of time that daily staying focused on our goals can have us rather worn out. I enjoy weekends so much more when I have a sense of completion and know that, while my work is not finished, I have accomplished much of what God set out for me to do.

Sabbath rest does not come because the work is all done, but rather in spite of the fact that there is much left to do. Father simply knows our need for rest and refreshment by quiet waters. (I love that about Him. No harsh task master, not the God I love.)

When he says we're forgiven, let's unload the guilt.
When he says we're valuable, let's believe him.
When he says we're eternal, let's bury our fears.
When he says we're provided for, let's stop worrying.
When he says, "Stand up," let's do it.
-Max Lucado

God's efforts are strongest when our efforts are useless. It is comforting to know as I begin a time of rest and celebration today that I put in the efforts to maintain my housework, to reach out to my neighborhood and world, to teach my piano students and do the work of my callings with enthusiasm and diligence. God has something, however weak and small, to use. I once was frustrated and discouraged because of my perfectionism. Once I realized that it is better to rest in the joy of reaching for excellence and loving the adventure of interruptions, Sabbath rest beckoned me with new satisfaction and delight that refreshes and reassures me.
"I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; Be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. -Psalm 27:13,14

Are you headed into quiet green pastures today? Are you living where still waters flow? It may be that your Sabbath rest comes at a different time from mine because of what God has called you to do, but do make time for His gentle rest and refreshing. It matters. It very much matters.

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