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Prayer for Week of September 23–Another prayer for rest????

September 24, 2012
by

For a blog about preparedness and action, we sure write a lot about rest.  It’s so important though!  And the Lord keeps pounding away at our hearts about rest.  We have to respond.  We just HAVE TO.  You know?

I was reading the kids a book of Jewish parables and short stories for the Sabbath.  There came a story about the days of the week quarreling about who was the greatest.  Each day of the week, pictured as a man, argued for why he was most notable.  The Seventh Day stayed quiet until called upon.  Then she (yes, SHE!) rose up in a peaceful, but strong, articulate and beautiful way.  She stretched forth her hands and said that it was on her that the Lord gave us Shabbat, that is rest.  She gave all the other days peace.  And they all stopped fighting for attention.

It got me to thinking about the day of rest pictured as a woman.  (Did you know that we read Proverbs 31 every Shabbat?)

What is it about a woman at rest?  There is nothing more beautiful is there?  Why is this?

“The house does not rest upon the ground, but upon a woman.”  –Mexican Proverb

It was when Adam was asleep that God took his rib and formed Eve.  Woman was literally created from a place of rest.  

It is in a place of rest that we are saved.  “In repentance and rest is your salvation.  In quietness and trust is your strength.”  Isaiah 30:15

Our homes can be such lovely places of rest–not just on the Sabbath, but all week long.  Because we represent rest to our families.  Because God has created us to give others rest.  Rest is a tool.  Rest is a weapon.  Rest is the fulfillment of God’s promises.

“The LORD grant that you may find rest, each in the house of her husband.”  Ruth 1:9 

Young Woman At Rest by Murat

“Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it….There remains therefore a rest for the people of God.  For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.”  Hebrews 4:1, 9-10

How is it even possible to rest in the middle of our hectic schedules?  We have a thousand things to do and several people call on us at the same time with urgent needs!  It might be a child who has skinned his knee at the same time the tea kettle is starting to scream, the phone is ringing and someone is at the door.  The way to live and work from a place of rest is to not look outside for rest, but inside, for the world outside will never willingly grant you time or space for rest.  So, it is up to you, to take your rest, to calm your own heart.  Ask the indwelling rest of Jesus to fill you and operate through you.  Spend time meditating on the Word of God.  Make silence a discipline–even if just a few minutes a day. Sit in silence, breath deeply and ask God for His thoughts.  Teach your children to do this, too.  These precious times of waiting before working will fuel the remainder of your day in peace.

When we grab hold of our rest, the other things in our lives that are rallying and fighting for attention, will have to come into order.  The noise, the distractions, the futile things will have to be silenced.

Be an instrument of Shabbat (Peace!) in your family.  You can funnel the grace of God to rest to the rest of them.

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.
Amen.
(The Prayer of St. Francis)
One Comment leave one →
  1. September 24, 2012 6:53 pm

    wonderful ! thank you SO much.. very timely :}

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