“Rest.” It sounds simple enough, but when God calls us to rest, what does He mean? In Genesis, God modeled rest after His work was complete. In the gospels, Jesus drew away to rest. Over a period of several years, He taught me four lessons about finding rest in God.
I had just turned in my manuscript to my publisher for my new book about overcoming worry, fear, and anxiety (releasing fall, 2019) when people began to ask the obvious question, “What are you going to do now?”
I didn’t have a ready answer for that. I had originally assumed that as soon as I turned in the manuscript for that book, I would begin work on a companion Bible study. Yet when the time came, it didn’t sit well in my spirit.
Over the next couple of weeks, God shared his plan for my next season: a season of rest.
What do you think of when you hear the word, “Rest”? Or “Be still”? Can I be honest and tell you, that those are two of the hardest things for me to do, and yet, I find myself smack dab in the place where that is what God is asking of me. Just recently, I sent off the manuscript draft of my next book to the editor on Monday. Friends congratulated me and told me to enjoy my “new normal” now that I wouldn’t be intently working in front of my computer from sun up until sundown on the book. I answered, in all seriousness, “What is that? What does my ‘new normal’ look like?” It left me uncomfortable and ill-at-ease. By Tuesday I felt aimless and purposeless.
The alarm didn’t go off that morning, so I awoke in a panic. I didn’t even have time to take my temperature but was pretty sure I was running a fever to match my flu-like symptoms as I dragged myself into the office. My head pounded, and my throat screamed for relief with every swallow I took. It promised to be a long day. As I dashed to the car later than I would have liked, I was greeted by the little warning light that no one likes to see on a morning they are pressed for time…EMPTY. Seems whoever was the last to drive my car left it for me to refuel, on a day I didn’t really have time to refuel, and I couldn’t afford not to. [more]
One sick day spilled into two. Two days lapsed into three days. Three days bled into a full week. Before I knew it, a week stretched into three weeks. How did we get here?
On that first day, I felt so miserable, I left my office early and didn’t much care that I had to cancel appointments, meets, and commitments. I figured a little extra R & R and I’d be up and around the next day, ready to meet the world with my usual gusto. [more]