Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, He said to them, “Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”
According to my Google search there are approximately 72 places in the Bible which mention rest and by that fact alone, I feel rest is important to God. And if it’s important to God, rest assured the devil will be after it. We are constantly going to and fro busy with life never taking a moment to breathe. I feel our lives are so demanding we find it difficult to even rest when we are resting. So many are plagued with the non-stop thoughts when they close their eyes they never really have a good nights rest. Folks, we are being robbed. Robbed blind. Totally stripped of the goodness of God. His desire for us is to rest. We can never fully accomplish what He has for us to do if we never get any rest.
The dictionary defines rest as a verb ironically. Not sure God intended it to be an action word, however it supports my theory that rest is not laziness.
REST: to cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, or recover strength.
Refresh means to give new strength or energy to; reinvigorate. Recover means to return to a normal state of health, mind, or strength. Funny how the word strength keeps popping up in those definitions. Strength means the capacity of an object or substance to withstand great force or pressure. HUH? wonder why the devil is after our rest!? He does not want any of us to withstand the storms we enter. He desires us to be worn out and mindless. His plan is to defeat us with constant go, go go and God is asking us to rest in Him.
Often times when we rest we are questioned and belittled. We are pushed to answer questions about why this or that wasn’t done instead of spending quality time with the Lord. We will never find true refreshing for our mind, body or souls until we understand rest is a necessity for withstanding all of the schemes of the enemy. We will lean towards giving up and giving in when we have not allowed God’s rest into our over extended calendars.
So! Here is my challenge. Start small. Block out 10 minutes a day for the next week in your calendar. Set a timer on your phone or your watch or your Fitbit. Spend that ten minutes doing nothing but seeking God’s Face. Set aside time for you and Jesus. After a week has gone by at another 5 minutes. After two weeks add any additional time you can in your calendar. You can even label it “Date with Jesus” or “My Rest”. Just get the courage to take back your stolen time with God. It might be a fight at first. Could turn into a battle, but may I remind you who fights your battles:
“For the LORD your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.” Deut. 20:4
“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” Rom. 8:31
“Through You we will push back our adversaries; Through Your name we will trample down those who rise up against us.” Ps. 44:5
“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matt. 10:28
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10
“Do not be afraid of them; the LORD your God himself will fight for you.” Deut. 3:22
“Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.” Is. 40:31
“One of your men puts to flight a thousand, for the LORD your God is He who fights for you, just as He promised you.” Josh. 23:10