Entering Our Rest
Last week I ended by encouraging you to discover the resting place of the Father's love. I am convinced that the enemy seeks to rob us of two major parts of our inheritance: our rest and our freedom. Of course, these are interwoven; the more at rest we are, the freer we are and vice versa. Rest is our inheritance and I'm not talking about sitting on a couch and doing nothing. I'm talking about the stillness and peace in our heart.
"There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience." (Hebrews 4:9-11 NIV)
"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28 NIV)
An inheritance is a gift, it's not a right. A gift is given, but for it to be a gift it has to be received. We are promised a life of rest but we have a choice whether we receive the gift or not. The writer of Hebrews is very clear: we can continue a life of works and religious duty or we can jump from the hamster wheel of works into the resting place of his love. In fact, the writer of Hebrews thinks that this is really important for us to do as he says 'make every effort' - some translations say 'strive' or 'be diligent' to enter your rest.
Paul's pretty clear about this, as he, too, reminds us not to focus on the results of our own works (Eph 2:9) but rather to seek out those things which God has already prepared for us to do (Eph 2:10). This is the point of what Jesus said in Matthew 11. "Come to me, take my yoke upon you, you will find rest for your souls".
What has been stolen can be restored. As we look to him he becomes the source of our life. We begin to live like Jesus, only doing what the Father gives us to do. It's then that our heart finds its resting place.
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