The Rest of, “What About the Rest?”


I have a track record of over-thinking things to the point I can’t actually enjoy the experience or resolve the situation.  It’s kept me up more nights than it was worth.  But then, I got a hold of a passage of scripture that challenged my over-thinking and literally changed my life…

Hebrews 4: 1-11(NIV):

1 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. 2 For we also have had the good news proclaimed to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because they did not share the faith of those who obeyed. 3 Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,

“So I declared on oath in my anger,

‘They shall never enter my rest.’”

And yet his works have been finished since the creation of the world. 4 For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: “On the seventh day God rested from all his works.”5 And again in the passage above he says, “They shall never enter my rest.”

6 Therefore since it still remains for some to enter that rest, and since those who formerly had the good news proclaimed to them did not go in because of their disobedience, 7 God again set a certain day, calling it “Today.” This he did when a long time later he spoke through David, as in the passage already quoted:

“Today, if you hear his voice,

do not harden your hearts.”[d]

8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works,[e] just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.

Israel lead by example in this kind of thinking.  They were determined to get the car without learning to drive.  What do you think that whole episode between Egypt and the Promised Land was all about?  Their poor driving instructor, Moses, did everything he could to guide them and give them the rules of the road.  Follow the traffic signs. Stay on your side of the road.  Pay your tolls. Stop at the Light.  Turn at the signal.

Technically, he was forced into retirement for losing his temper with their rash, impatient behavior.  Can you imagine going through Driver’s Ed for FORTY YEARS, still not getting your license and losing the car? The way it is recorded in the 4th Chapter of Hebrews, God says, “So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.’”

A whole generation of people died without entering the Promised Land. And another few generations kept neglecting the Rest, and continued on in a vicious cycle of losing and fighting to regain the thing that was rightfully theirs.

God does not want that for you.  That is why we have Philippians 4 and Hebrews 4. Scriptures like that (and so many others-look ‘em up).  To remind us what to focus on and to help us stay focused.  It helped Peter walk on water.  It helped Paul defy death…a LOT.  It can help you keep your faith strong and overcome ANYTHING.

I sincerely didn’t want to disobey God and I did not want my body betraying me anymore for lack of sleep, so I found all of the scriptures I could about rest and sleep and I put them everywhere I could possibly see them. Then, I put them all on a piece of paper (you can use your laptop) where I could read them out loud to myself before I went to bed. I also went herbal.  I found supplements (like melatonin and tryptophan) and teas (like mint and chamomile) that make sleep easier and I employed them right along with the word of God.  After a while, sleep came easier and easier.  It got to the point where I could speak those scriptures to my soul whenever I got too hectic and whenever I found myself distracted by the cares and the affairs of this life.

I pray that this will help you have sweet sleep tonight (Proverbs 3:21-26).

Focus on God’s promises.  He’s never failed.  Just remember to keep your peace you must TAKE YOUR REST!

 

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Pastor Tom Salagaj
    Oct 12, 2012 @ 13:48:12

    Psalm 127:2 NCV
    New Century Version

    It is no use for you to get up early and stay up late, working for a living. The Lord gives sleep to those he loves.

    Much mental exercise is wasted in the mental state of worry and fruitless efforts to make ends meet by relying on our human resources only. Great peace, the kind needed for peaceful, restful, restoring, healing sleep comes from God. An old word needs to be rejuvinated…RELAX! Relaxing in Jesus’ arms has worked wonders for me. Laying everything in His hands (Cast ALL your care upon Me for I care for you!) works peace like nothing else. But will you do it? Or will you disobey by continuing to worry, strive, overthink, overwrite, over-analyze, figure it all out…..that is what I think when I hear things like “not entering into the rest” that is provided by God.

    How often has God said to me, “When are going to shut up and let Me do my best work? I thought you promised to trust Me?” To distrust God is to worry about things that have already been given to Him by faith. To continuallly distrust God is to disobey…think about it..but not too long!

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  2. Miranda Bell
    Oct 13, 2012 @ 08:38:54

    wow!!!!!! what an exquisite, extraordinary word! I love this!!!

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  3. directortom
    Oct 13, 2012 @ 09:44:28

    In addition, we must never forget that we are being trained, schooled, tested, and prepared for the Master’s pleasure not only in this life but also in the life to come. Eternal life! God is looking for a few choice kings to put on significant thrones in the kingdom to come. Those who endure the difficult and extreme, ongoing hardships in this earthly life will be qualified to sit on those thrones…FOREVER!

    There has always been a hierarchy in God’s organizations. Jesus had three of the disciples that were closer to Him due to their zeal. Not without error and certainly not without skipping a beat now and then. The others, though loved by Him, were the “hangers on”. So the question is, what kind of throne will we qualify for? A significant throne that has been prepared for the overcomers? Or will we receive a street corner throne on which to sit? It’s really our choice, is it not? Endure and be greatly rewarded or hang on and be on the back row of things.

    Since eternity is forever, I want a front row seat to things. Therefore, I will endure, I will overcome, I will seek to please God by ceasing from stife, worry, complaining, or living continually in doubt and fear. I’m reminded of an old song from my youth. “Trust and Obey, For There’s No Other Way, To Be Happy In Jesus, But To Trust and Obey.”

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