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The Best Place to Find Rest

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Rest is a necessary part of God’s ordered creation.  Rest has been written into the rhythm of life since the world first began.  We all know rest is necessary in this life because if we get too busy and do not slow down, life eventually catches up with us.  You simply cannot rebel against the rhythm of the day.  The sun comes up and the sun goes down.  We awake to serve God, and then we rest and recover.  If we get out of this rhythm for too long, then our bodies will quickly remind us that this is not what God has intended.  We need to rest.

The summer season is often a time that many people within our community look forward to for rest and relaxation.  Just as the days can catch up with you, so too can the seasons.  It seems that there is just a different pace in the summer, when compared to the rest of the year.  School is out, summer sports begin, and people take off on their much needed vacations. We soak in the sunshine and nice weather during extended weekends away from home.  We may visit different states or different countries; or maybe our vacation is simply a short drive to a nearby lake.

Regardless of what your summer entails, it is most likely something quite different than the pace we keep during the rest of the year. Granted, there are people who work more in the weekends or the summer, but for most people summer seems to be the season of rest.

Rest was first introduced by God following the six days of creation.  Genesis 2:3 states, “So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all His work that He had done in creation.” Wrapped up in this Bible verse are a few important understandings that help us unpack God’s purpose for Sabbath rest.

The first aspect to understand is God’s act of blessing. Only two blessings are given in the entire creation account.  Out of all of God’s creation, God only blessed man and woman and the Sabbath. That means that men and women, as well as the Sabbath, are specifically set apart by God to be holy.  Holy simply means, “set apart for the purposes of God.”

All men and all women are set apart to glorify God. We glorify God by prioritizing God first in our lives.  The First Commandment states that we shall have no other gods.  Jesus also, in His Great Commandment, validates this fact by telling us to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and mind.  God is to come first, and literally, everything else in life follows behind.  This looks different for each person, but similarity exists in our need for rest.

The second aspect to consider is that although we all need rest God does not.  This shows us that God created the Sabbath rest for us.  Jesus further validates this in Mark 2:27-28 by stating, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.  So the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.”  Jesus is saying here that He embodies all the blessings of rest to which God’s Sabbath has always pointed.  Therefore, to know Jesus is to know Sabbath rest.  To know Jesus is to realize that God is truly with us.

So this is my tip for where to go to find the best place for rest in the season of summer.  True rest cannot be found on a beach or a boat, in a hotel or an exotic location, or even on a masseuse table.  True rest cannot be found “somewhere else” this summer season.  True rest comes in continuing to be with your Savior. To be with your Savior means to be in the places where Jesus has promised to be.  We find our Sabbath rest in God’s Word, with our Lord in prayer, and among His people at church.  These are the places where the Lord of the Sabbath can always be found.  This summer, as we all enjoy the blessings of God in our lives, let us all remember from whom these blessings come:  Praise God…from whom all blessings flow.  It is there that you will find rest. 

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