Saturday, November 30, 2019

The Peace you cannot Find

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”Matthew 11:28 

If you find that Christianity exhausts you, draining you of your energy, then you are practicing religion rather than enjoying a relationship. Jesus said that a relationship with Him would bring rest to your soul. Your walk with the Lord will not make you weary; it will invigorate you, restore your strength, and energize your life. Hard work or lack of sleep can make you tired. This fatigue can usually be remedied by a good rest. But there is a deeper fatigue that goes beyond physical tiredness. There is an emotional exhaustion that comes from experiencing heavy burdens and draining crises. There is a tiredness deep within your soul that comes from carrying the weight of the needs of others. You can go on a vacation, but your soul will not be restored. This condition can only be rectified by finding rest in Christ. Some zealous Christians want to do all they can to serve Christ, and they exhaust themselves in the process. It was to these that Jesus extended His invitation to go to Him and learn from Him. Jesus spent most of His earthly ministry surrounded by needy multitudes. He faced relentless opposition, He often prayed throughout the night, and He rarely had any privacy; yet He always received the rest and strength that came from His Father. It was not that Jesus did not work hard but that He knew the path to spiritual rest. Are you weary? Go to Jesus and let Him give you His rest. His rest will restore your soul as nothing else can. - Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day 

It's been an interesting lesson, this past year has, in part because of this idea.  Rest.

There have been many challenges in this part of my life, but if I had to be honest, finding rest was up there in the top ten. 

But, that having been said, upon following through with what I was told to do - by God's direction - I almost find myself doing a lot more and am no where near as stressed or tired. 

There in it seems that God ties in obedience with Him keeping His promises.  He spoke to the Jewish leaders saying go and understand what this means, that He desires obedience over sacrifice.  

It really doesn't matter what we give up in life if we aren't replacing it with something that is right in God's eyes.  You can quit a bad habit and if you don't replace it properly, you will just pick up another bad habit. 

This obedience thing goes far in regards to rest.  It is essential to it.  Our obedience means casting aside our wants, desires or wishes.  Our emotions, our feelings as it is, need put aside in regards to obedience.  Why say that?  Because, look at all who Jesus healed.  They had to let go of everything in obedience to be healed.  They were ready to obey in whatever Jesus required to get the healing He offered.  The Disciples, in being taught, had to set aside themselves in obedience in order to be taught of God.  The lives of the Apostles, after these men were empowered by the Spirit, lived lives that set aside themselves in order to obey their calling. 

Are we any different?  In this, no, we are not.  It's never about us in the Christian life, it's about people seeing Jesus.  What Jesus had done and is doing.  It's not about empowerment or entitlement.  If you are claiming to be a Christian and people see you and not Jesus, you have a problem.  A big problem.  God says He will not give His glory to another. 

As Blackaby says, you will indeed burn yourself out trying to live your way for God.  Live how God wants you to live and THEN you will find peace and rest.  Obey. 

My favorite hymn is Trust and Obey.  You can't have Jesus on the Throne of your heart if you aren't absolutely doing both. 

If your rights matter...
If your position in society matters...
If your wants matter...
If your status matters...

Then you need to question who is on the Throne of your heart. 

You will not find peace and rest if anyone but Jesus is on the Throne of your heart. 

Re-read that first part from Blackaby.  Is God speaking to you?  

There's a song out with a line in it that says "Give me Jesus, give me Jesus!"  He is what is to matter in your life.  

When we put ourselves above others, then by that very act, you have put yourself above Christ. 

If any part of you means more than what Jesus says should be evident in you, then you need to look in the mirror and seek repentance.  

You want to truly live?  You want peace and rest? You will never find it in this world without Jesus on the Throne of your heart.  If people see you and not Jesus, yes I am repeating that, then YOU are your own problem.  Your achievements will always be meaningless if what is done doesn't include Jesus. 

All who were touched by, and trusted in, Jesus found peace and rest.   All.

Just as in the physical world, so it is in the Spiritual world.  You aren't what's important.  Look at the end of the 7 year Tribulation.  For a thousand years the only important thing in the lives of the world will be Jesus.  In Ezekiel, the Lord Jesus mentions a restoration of the hearts of the people to Himself.  

Where is your heart today?

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