Rest For Our Souls

Silence. Think about it, how often is it absolutely 100% quiet? In my life, I think the answer is almost never.

Being a registered nurse on a progressive floor, it seems that there is constantly an alarm of some kind going off, or the phone is ringing, or someone is literally calling out for their nurse. When I go home, I hear the alarms, the call lights, the ring of the telephone inside my head. I wake startled, thinking I am being summoned to a patient’s bedside to help them use the bathroom or administer pain medication.

I’m sure you can relate on some level. We all have some level of constant noise. Our phones are always on, beeping and tweeting to give us some notification that someone wants to communicate with us. There is always the buzz of a conversation happening somewhere, the neighbors dog is barking, a lawnmower across the street, a car horn honking on our commutes to work, etc. Let’s face it, quietness and stillness are just not part of our everyday lives; but still the Lord calls us to rest in His presence and be quiet daily.

“‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.’” Matthew‬ ‭11:28-30‬‬‬

I have found comfort in these verses so many times, but not until recently did I realize the calling and conviction in them.Jesus wants us to come to Him to find rest for our souls.Each of us probably find ourselves asking for prayer or seeking guidance from our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ when all we really NEED to do, is simply rest. The verse that really hammered this home for me is Exodus 14:14. Now this is also a verse I have sought comfort from many times, but I’ve never read it in this translation, and doing so changed my understanding of it.

“The LORD will fight for you; you must be quiet.” (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

A more direct translation of the second half of this verse from the Hebrew is: you will hold your peace, which essentially means do nothing; to remain at rest.

Here the Israelites were lamenting to Moses, they thought that their God had failed them. God had just rescued them from Pharaoh, and yet here he came, marching towards them. But Moses has a simple directive for them:wait for God’s orders and be silent, trust in His plans. Trust the God that has already delivered you once. He has been faithful before and He will be faithful again.

And that is exactly what happened, God provided for them. In a situation where the Israelites were once again facing death at Pharaoh’s hands, God sent a cloud to form a barrier between His beloved people and the man who came to harm them. AND THEN GOD PARTED THE WATERS AND MADE A WAY WHERE THERE SEEMED NOT TO BE ONE!

Sound familiar? I love the Old Testament because in every story we can see Jesus. My heart immediately leapt to Matthew 11:28-30 after reading this story in Exodus. Jesus gives the same command to us, that God gave to Moses, except Jesus has provided the way for us this time, all we have to do is come to Him. He will take the burden of solving life’s difficulties, we only need to listen for His voice in the quiet and rest.

So often, just like the Israelites, we want to tell God what to do and what will fix our situation, but in reality His great plan is already in place. We have to simply rest, be quiet, and trust that He is fighting a battle for us that we cannot physically see. He promises us rest while He does. He has already overcome. He will come through with a way we could never imagine, He will part the waters.

And that my sisters, is good news.May the Lord continually open our eyes to really see the greater work He’s doing in, through, and around us.  And may He deepen our knowledge and understanding of His character everyday, so we can enjoy the sweet abundance of an intimate relationship with Him.

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