Settle before you struggle!

wordswag_1505734111748Awakening this morning, I was instantly aware of the challenges and work that stretch out in ahead in this new week.  There are the mundane chores – a lawn to be tended, bills to be paid. There are the normal responsibilities – sermons to write, calls to make, study in preparation to speak. There are ‘people’ needs – broken hearts, those who have lost their way, those who are overwhelmed, grieving, or confused who want to sort it out with my help.  For a moment, I felt like turning over and hiding in my bedroom.  (No, not really!)  You, too, face a new week of work and responsibility, don’t you? This is life. Making a living, keeping life moving in the right direction, requires sustained effort against the chaos.

But . . .  settle into your strength before you tear into the day. Before I even threw back the sheets to put my feet on the floor, I turned to our Father to  commit my way and this day to Him, to invite His wisdom, and yes, to thank Him for giving me a solid place on which to stand, a rest for my soul.

I think of that ‘rest’ in this way.  Looking over the New York skyline, those buildings that stand tall, hundreds of feet above the earth, are impressive. They ‘rest’ on foundations that extend to the bedrock below the surface, on steel that goes through the subsoil to the rock!  The engineering of the foundation of every skyscraper is one of the most important parts of the project, every one unique to the site, to the depth of the bedrock, and to the ‘demands’ of the building’s weight and height!

Christian, there is a solid foundation for life, one designed by the Father on which we rest our souls, finding the stability and strength we need for life today. Paul reminded Timothy to rest on this – “God’s truth stands firm like a foundation stone with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his.” (2 Timothy 2:19)  God knows YOU, knows the stresses you are facing, knows the unique demands of your life. And, He invites you to rest yourself on Him. Jesus opens His heart to us – “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30, NIV) The ‘rest’ of which He speaks is not a vacation, nor does He say He will release us from our responsibilities!  He offers us to steady us, to refresh us, to prepare us – so that we will not collapse.

This Monday morning, before you engage fully with life, and hopefully you will engage; lean into your Father. Breathe simple prayers of thanks, of petition, of praise, of worship. Quiet your mind and heart to find a steady place as your find your footing.  Sometimes getting to that place demands a level of discipline to quiet our voice and our thoughts, to focus on the Presence of Jesus. Contemplative prayer is that listening, worshipful approach to Jesus, seeing Him with open arms. It can be more difficult to just ‘wait on the Lord’ than to pour out a torrent of words, can’t it?

Take a cue from David, from a Psalm of prayer. This is a word from the Word for you this Monday. “The Lord is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1, NIV)  “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (Psalm 27:14, NIV)

Leaning On The Everlasting Arms

What a fellowship what a joy divine
Leaning on the everlasting arms
What a blessedness what a peace is mine
Leaning on the everlasting arms

 What have I to dread what have I to fear
Leaning on the everlasting arms\
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near
Leaning on the everlasting arms

Safe and secure from all alarms
Leaning on the everlasting arms

Anthony Johnson Showalter | Elisha Albright Hoffman

© Words: Public Domain


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