What really is it? Sure we know God ‘rested’ on the seventh day, but what exactly does that mean?
For the legalist that means doing almost nothing. The old testament law had the sabbath, with certain restrictions as to what could be done that day. Of course the spiritual leadership eventually expanded the details and regulations of the sabbath and soon it became a strict burden of a day. Striving at resting will never be true … rest.
Do think when God rested it was a burden on Him? Did He restrict Himself? Or was it another thing?
Real rest has to be without burden. True relaxation has to be filled with a feeling of joy without any guilt of not working. Many people don’t know how to rest, and have a constant nagging feeling that they HAVE to be doing something …more. My sense is that they are motivated by fear. One can’t really rest if fear or guilt is in the background. Many have a fear of not having enough, or doing enough, so they drive themselves and everyone around them into feeling guilty for …resting.
If you don’t have enough trust in your relationships and GOD then real rest is almost impossible. In the modern Christian world the day of rest became the day to go to church, and be righteous, and upright, and wear your most fancy clothes. Then eventually it became a duty, and filled with almost a competition of being religious enough. Look your best, serve harder, serve more, serve longer in the House of God …why…because its the day of …rest?
If you don’t really see God as your Source of all things — then striving becomes your lifestyle. If you don’t think God will take care of you — then you have to do it yourself, all the time.
The modern day of rest ..isn’t really a restful day. The enemy needles the disciple that they need to do more always, so they will be worthy of what God provides for them, or that God will praise them for all of their striving. The enemy WANTS you in fear and burned out from working.
This isn’t an excuse to not work hard or to not take your responsibilities seriously. But this is an issue of trust. Read Matthew 6:25-34 What does our anxiety and anxiousness do for us? How does our anxiousness help us in trusting God?
Real rest has to involve the soul and mind as well, not just the body. Having to let go of our anxiousness and worries and be grateful for what He has provided for you. Real rest comes from trust and gratefulness.
The enemy offers rest in a different way, usually through alcohol or drugs. To numb the fear and anxiousness. To help one escape the nagging in the mind and soul. Then the drug use becomes an addiction so that they can seemingly have brief moments of …rest (the high / or drunken stupor). So many are prescribed drugs to overcome anxiety, and then they develop a false sense of rest and become reliant on the drugs. Drugs and alcohol can be a trap to keep one from reaching out to the real Source of help.
Rest is a part of balance in one’s life. Some people use ‘rest’ as an excuse and become lazy and slothful. But to a work-aholic anyone not working all the time is lazy. Even in celebrations a work-aholic is always working hard at …something. Mary and Martha. Luke 10:38-42
Why do you think heaven is always seen as a place of …rest? Is not His Kingdom here and now? Do you know how to rest well, and work hard? Do you have a healthy balance in your life with those two?
This may be something to ponder and think about. Not being balanced with times of real rest means there is something wrong deep within your soul.
This is definitely something to inquire the Holy Spirit about. But most fear what He will say about this. They feel any correction by God is seen as a lack of love He has for them, and we know that is a lie. Hebrews 12:6
If you really want to grow up and mature in character and wisdom — then hearing the Voice of the Holy Spirit and asking Him the hard questions about yourself is the most sure and quickest way of doing it.
If you don’t rest and recharge — you will not last when you’re needed.