I felt it.
I really did. So much going on per hour. I thought to myself, “How come God didn’t give us 30 hours in a day??? There’s no way to do all of this, eat my food, drive from here to there. Crap, I wanted to read my bible today… Guess I’ll have to suffice with podcasts and uplifting music. I need something.”
It’s 12:30am and I’m barely closing my eyes… 5:15am, my alarm goes off.
A week goes by, and I haven’t seen many friends, except for two. How grateful I was for their presence, but if you know me, that’s not normal. I know how to hit the ground running and move with a fast-paced life, I mean c’mon, I live in the city right? In order to succeed, you gotta count the cost and make stuff happen….
Not really. I’ve learned this lesson once before, and I wasn’t going to repeat what I did then. I knew that I had wisdom in this area and I needed to apply it.
“Every ‘YES’ is a ‘NO’ to something, and every ‘NO’ is a ‘YES’ to something else. I always heard this from my Pastor growing up. We can stay yes and fill our lives with, “Yes” to this and “Yes” to that, but are you saying “No” to something more important? What if that something was crucial for your sustainability? For me, life was good, but about to burst at the seams.
Then I found myself in 1 Chronicles 23:25
“David said, “Now that the God of Israel has given rest to his people and made Jerusalem his permanent home, the Levites no longer have to carry the Tabernacle and all the furniture required for the work of worship.” These last words of David referred only to Levites twenty years old and above.
28-31 From now on the assigned work of the Levites was to assist Aaron’s sons in the work of worship in God’s house….
32 In short, the Levites, with the sons of Aaron as their companions in the ministry of holy worship, were responsible for everything that had to do with worship: the place and times and ordering of worship.”
My idea of rest wasn’t the same after reading this scripture. I always thought of rest much like that eCard with the woman saying, “It’s Friday!” and throws her office papers up in the air releasing herself into the lazy weekend. But what if rest was doing less to receive more? Like this scripture, the idea of rest released the Levites into a position to truly honor and worship the Lord. I needed to be okay releasing myself from day-to-day duties to intentionally hear the voice of Father God, to worship Him in quiet, and to see him in the motion going on anywhere around me.
To live by faith and not by sight requires a very important piece; Listening. If we can’t hear the voice of God, how can we follow His ways? If we can’t follow His ways, how can we stay on His steady path for us? How can we love people on an empty tank? We’re only doing damage to the Kingdom in that state, or at least I know I would.. I cannot grow with it when I’m tired and weak. I’m vulnerable to the lies of the enemy when I’m exhausted.
So, I made changes. I cut back. I made no plans except for the things that would draw me closer to Jesus; I went for a run, I ventured to the beach, I sat in my room and prayed, I left DTLA early to get ready for bed at a decent hour. I carefully set up dinner dates with friends and left a lot of room for the spontaneity of life (or lack thereof) because it’s in those things I see God. I had time for strangers and passers by or to find something encouraging to share with the individual God pointed out to me in a moment. I realize once again, that nothing can separate me from the love of God, but I can let a lot of little things separate me from His voice. I don’t want that to be the case. I want to live my life well, love well, work hard and most importantly let Jesus be at the center, as it all gravitates toward Him.
It’s our hearts God wants access to. He wants us to know Him and have closeness with us. His grace will always find us, and remind us, thankfully. Sure, life gets busy, but there is always something we can do to create rest (it looks different for everyone). We just have the responsibility to enter into it; to leave the heavy lifting and enter His courts with gratitude and worship. In that, we will find that the source of everything we ever needed was found in the secret place we create with Jesus. He will sustain is, and we live out of an overflow of His love for us.
Now, how about we all schedule some time to take a break? 😉