Taking Time to Rest in Christ
by Lynette Kittle
Our family loves cross-country road trips, causing us to embark on numerous jaunts over the years, including a 7-day, 12-hour daily driving adventure from Western Ohio to Alaska. While crossing the 3,796 miles through the Midwest, Northwestern United States, and regions of Canada, even when closing my eyes at night I still felt the sensation of driving through the mountainous up-and-down route, ever cruising in our van camper even while asleep.
However, especially in long and desolated stretches of highways, a sign indicating a designated rest area was a welcomed sight. Anticipating a safe, sheltered stop from the miles of driving, offering us an opportunity to stop, stretch our legs, walk around, and breathe in the fresh air, renewed our strength during the many miles of driving. Whereas rest areas along an extended road trip are necessary for our overall well-being and ability to continue on our route, so are rest stops needed along life’s pathway, too.
Resting in Christ Along the Way
Like on a long road trip, during life’s journey we may face difficult and tiring situations where the roads become bumpy, narrow, detoured, or even closed at times. Work-related stress, family tensions, worldwide pandemics, inflation, shortages, and more can cause us to want to go into crisis mode. Yet, God encourages us in Psalm 37:7 to, rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him. And in Matthew 11:28, He calls us to “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Sometimes we forget about His offer to be our rest in life. We overlook how when we are weary, He offers Himself as a safe and refreshing place to take a break when the road we’re traveling is taking a toll on us and wearing us out. He is our safe place to rest and find renewed strength to continue on our journey. Instead of constantly thinking about our situations, trying to figure out what to do next and how to resolve issues, we can stop, take a break, and let Jesus give us His rest along the way, trusting and believing He is working all things out for our good (Romans 8:28).
Paying the Price of Pushing Forward
Because God doesn’t ever grow tired or weary, we can turn to Him knowing He’ll be there for us. “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom” (Isaiah 40:28).
Often in life, like on road trips, we think there isn’t any time to rest if we want to reach our destination. Instead of taking time to stop, take it easy, and put our feet up for a bit, we just keep pushing forward. In going forward, we often tire ourselves out, letting the miles rob us of the joy available during our travels, allowing it to steal our peace of mind, contentment, and more from our lives.
Receiving His Rest
But just like a rest area stop refreshes our minds, bodies, and emotions during a long trip, when we decide to rest in the Lord and lay our worries, concerns, fears, and doubts at His feet, we also find refreshment and renewal in body, soul, and spirit. As well, we begin to see God move on our behalf in new and remarkable ways. Instead of feeling like we have to push harder to our destination, we began to see how when we step back from trying to direct our journey, God steps in to work His ways and will in our circumstances.
When we choose to stop and rest in Jesus, He brings relief from anxiety, along with the desire to control, redirect, and solve our situations. Like a much-needed roadside stop, His rest refreshes us so we can keep traveling the road of life.
Intersecting Faith and Life:
Like we look for rest stops during a long road trip, look ahead for times where you can take a few minutes, to pull over from your daily grind to find some moments of rest and refreshment, knowing even God took time to rest.
Photo credit: ©GettyImages/Prostock-Studio
Lynette Kittle is married with four daughters. She enjoys writing about faith, marriage, parenting, relationships, and life. Her writing has been published by Focus on the Family, Decision, Today’s Christian Woman, kirkcameron.com, Ungrind.org, StartMarriageRight.com, and more. She has a M.A. in Communication from Regent University and serves as associate producer for Soul Check TV.
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