When is the last time you’ve rested?
No, I mean, really rested?
If I were to answer that question, given the circumstances going on in my current life and some of the uncertainty filling it, I would say that it’s been a minute since I’ve really rested. I’ve had days where I’ve done virtually nothing, but even when my days weren’t full of to-do lists and things to accomplish, my mind was still running a mile a minute. I could not stop thinking about decisions that needed to be made and what the next steps could look like.
A few days ago, I was reminded that rest does not necessarily come from external factors. Yes, there’s definitely a need for physical rest that allows us to recharge in the middle of the wilderness, drinking coffee on a balcony facing the mountains – a sight that would certainly about Instagram worthy. However, our bodies need to rest spiritually, too, and it was this week that I realized I have not been doing that.
I have been praying to God, but each problem that I would lay at His feet, I would somehow end up picking up and over-analyzing again. I would somehow find these situations back in my own hands as I would try to figure out ways to solve them.
“I have to do this and say this.”
“What is going on? When will this end?”
While I am not saying there is nothing wrong with going to God with these questions, I am realizing that some things aren’t for me to understand or have the answers to right now and man, that’s hard.
It’s especially hard to not entertain these questions when the mountain in front of you seems so large and doesn’t seem to be moving anywhere. It’s bulky, firm, and it’s height and depth seem to be unending. In some ways, the height of these mountains in our lives reminds us of our own frailty, because it’s when we see these gigantic challenges ( mountains) that we also see how weak we are and how we lack the ability to move it ourselves.
We want to. Oh, boy do we want to and try to attempt to move it ourselves.
Metaphorically speaking, I‘m sure if my challenges right now were mountains, you’d probably see me on the ground below it, trying to tie ropes around it or do whatever I could to move it, myself and with my own strength (or lack thereof). I’d try chipping at it, thinking that by chipping away at the mountain, piece-by-piece, I’d eventually destroy it. Yet with each attempt to tear it down myself, I realize I cannot. I am not capable of demolishing this thing and each attempt I’ve made has been futile. It’s only made me exert so much energy that now I am emotionally and physically tired.
I want to know what’s next, but I know that with God and His ability to know not only our hearts, but what’s best for us, He knows that if I knew what the outcome would be I would only obsess about the outcome and try to create steps to get there.
If I knew the answers to everything and every little step in my life, I would not feel the need to rely on Him as much.
I would over-analyze, I would try to fix things and I wouldn’t simply rest.
I have a desire to see people come to know Christ and to see girls realize their purpose in Him, but how can I do that if I am not resting myself? How can I do that if I am not allowing myself to be properly poured into?
It’s simple – I need to find myself at the feet of Jesus, venting, praying, trusting, and resting in Him more than I try to figure out things all of the time. Sometimes, it’s not meant for me to know the answer right now. Sometimes, it’s not meant for me know when a storm is going to end. Maybe in this uncertainty of what’s to come, I am learning to cling to Jesus more than the end-result.
Maybe, through these seasons of difficulty, we’re learning to rely on Him each step of the way.
Maybe, we’ve already been given the answer to our problems, which is Jesus, Himself. Through His sacrifice on the cross, we now have the gift of eternal life and uninterrupted time with Him. We have access to the Father and can openly share our hurts, our struggles, and our challenges, knowing that we are heard. Ultimately He is the answer.
I wish I could say that at this point I’ve grasped this and I no longer struggle with this, but even as I am writing this, I am still fighting thoughts and anxieties about situations currently in my life. I am struggling with concerns about what’s to come of this or that. Yet, I can sense this gentle reminder from the Holy Spirit to pray, trust, and leave it with God – not pick it up and agonize over the fact that I don’t know what’s going on.
I’m not called to pick things up again and allow myself to relish in the condemnation I’ve felt being poured out onto me from other people.
I am not expected to pick things up and ruminate over the details of the situations/challenges and how hurt I am.
I am not even expected to pick things up and re-victimize myself for something that I cannot control.
I should not grab hold of things again and allow doubt and fear to consume me, but to grab hold of Jesus, trusting that even though it doesn’t feel good and even though things aren’t always fully known to us, that He can move mountains, so He can definitely handle the challenges that we face.
I need to leave these burdens with Him and I need to truly really rest.
I am grateful for that. I am grateful that despite these challenges, we can go to Him in full confidence knowing that He hears us, He’s with us, and that He is mighty to help us. I am thankful that in the midst of the uncertainties, He extends His hand to help us – not necessarily with answers, but with His presence – reminding us that He is the answer.
So, rest, my friends. I mean really rest. Allow yourself to rest in knowing that what you’ve left in the hands of God will be handled in His timing and in His way. Rest knowing that we don’t have to have it all figured out because we have Savior who knows and already does.