Find True Rest in God
Matthew 11:28-30 (NIV)
28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 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. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
I think I’ve always had problems with wanting to find my self-worth in the things that I’ve accomplished. Maybe it’s because I’m the oldest child of Korean American immigrants and have always felt the need to ‘pay back’ all that they’ve sacrificed for me; or to be as independent and self-sufficient as I possibly can so that my parents don’t have to worry about me. Or maybe it’s because I’ve always fallen into the thought that how I look or how much I weigh makes me undeserving of love, so I need to make up for it in other areas of my life.
Whatever the cause, one of the ways that this broken way of thinking has made itself manifest in my life is that I struggle with rest. This past week is just one example of how I felt consumed by all the school assignments I had and deadlines I had to make. It didn’t help that I’ve been very jet lagged (I was on a spring break class trip the previous week), so my sleep schedule has been completely messed up. I’ve been waking up when I have to go to sleep, and unable to keep my eyes open during class, work, or meetings for extracurricular activities. Towards the middle of the week, I remember praying, “God, please help me. I literally cannot make it through the day without You. Please help me.”
And He did. Although I don’t know if I prayed that prayer with much faith, the Lord answered me. Throughout the week, when I felt like I should be staying awake and getting a little more work done, He closed my eyes and granted me the physical rest that I hadn’t been allowing myself to have. But when He wasn’t letting me get some sleep, God was waking me up (literally) so that I could spend time with Him and experience true rest.
To be honest, the first few times He woke me up, I just took it as an opportunity to do more schoolwork. I’d had some desire to spend time in His Word, but that desire quickly left me because I decided to do my work first. But this morning, God woke me up at 5:30 AM, and I had no pressing work to do and no more excuses to make, so I went to Starbucks, opened my Bible, and started spending some actual quality time with the Lord, something that I haven’t done in a while.
As much needed as the sleep I got towards the end of this week was, nothing compares to the rest that I’ve found in spending time with the Lord. I fell into old patterns this week and tried to find that rest in sleep, in binge watching Youtube videos, in spending time with people, and a number of other things. But it all paled in comparison to this Saturday morning in Starbucks, spending time in the Word and with God.
For Your Reflection
For those of you who are reading this today, if God wakes you up, get up and spend time with Him! Don’t give Him your usual excuses and don’t go back to sleep. But stay awake and listen to whatever He has to tell you today. Allow the Father speak truth into your life so that you can experience the rest and peace that only can come from Him.