As I sit down to write this post, I am tired. Not just physically. I’m tired emotionally too. It’s been a long year. I’ve shared some of our story in previous posts. I’ve shared that we are in a new state…a new town…a new church… Everything is new and different. When I made the commitment to write this 31 day series, I originally thought that I would title the series “preparing to leave.” I wanted to share the things that the Lord taught me in the almost 7 months that we were in transition. Very late on September 30th, the night before the 1st post was to publish, the Lord changed my heart. I felt that He still wanted me to share things He had taught me but that I was not supposed to dwell on the leaving part. So here I am. It’s day 12 and the thing is that today, I feel like I need to focus on the leaving.
I think my heart and mind are drawn back to our former hometown because they are now recovering from Hurricane Matthew barreling through. We have friends who are still without power. There are washed out roads, damage to houses, and yards full of debris. Watching all of this via Facebook is hard. My heart wants to be with them. I would not have wanted to experience the hurricane, but I wish I could be there to help my friends.
Knowing that people I love are dealing with hard stuff makes me long to be back there. So, here’s a confession, even before the hurricane, I still had a pull to be there. As an adult, I am sure that I should be able to go with the flow, to adjust to change, to find contentment and rest in my circumstances. But the hard reality is that things are different than I had planned for my life and for my family. If you have been reading my series since October 1st, I shared some of how God had really different plans for our family than I ever imagined.
I’m okay with His plan being different. I really am. At least in my head I’m okay with it.
The heart and emotions are a different story. No matter how long you plan to leave a place, it’s still hard. There’s just not enough time spent with the precious people that God had in your path for however long you were there. That is what I am dealing with. I miss my friends and our church and our homeschool group. This is hard for me to admit. You see, I keep telling myself that I am need to be strong for my kids. And that I need to be strong for those that I left behind. I have it in my head that when I talk to them, I am supposed to be wonderful. But the truth is that none of that is true. The truth is that it’s okay for me to miss what we left behind. The people and the familiar places.
The harder truth is that I can not be so consumed with missing the past that I don’t rest in the present. And I can not be so consumed with missing the past hat I loose sight of the blessings that God has planned for the future. I have to chose joy. I have to look forward to what God has planned and I have to rest in His plan for me and my family. I have to rest. Matthew 11:28 tells us that God will give us rest.
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
That’s it. As I sat down to write, feeling such a strong need to rest, this was the verse that God laid on my heart. I have the distinctive feeling that I am not the only one that needs that verse today.
Love God Greatly is a favorite source for Bible studies. During the 7 months of transition, I worked my way through several Bible studies that they have available on their website. As I was studying God as Wonderful Counselor in the Names of God study, I came across this quote:
By resting in God’s love for us, as Christians we have the security of knowing that God has us exactly where we need to be for our own good and for His purpose.
The rest He gives us is available in His love. It’s also available in His purpose. Isn’t that a beautiful thought? Charles Spurgeon says that resting in Jesus is a blessing.
For God’s people to be given the blessing of resting in Jesus is an uplifting thought indeed, and to see the glory of it in their life is a double blessing.
I’m a word nerd and that usually compels me to look up words in the dictionary and Bible. It’s interesting that “rest” appears in the English Standard Version 521 times. Here’s the thing, some of the times “rest” appears, it’s part of another word.
It occurred to me that by “resting” in Him, I can find RESTORATION for emotional and even physical pain. I imagine, and look forward to finding out, that I will not be as RESTLESS anymore. I want to “rest” in Him. I am on a journey. Part of that journey is to learn to “rest” in Him.
Joy to You!