Yes, we are dust, but our identity in this life remains ever secure in Christ. Let that inform and guide you particularly when resting seems impossible. Never lose sight of the reality that “as a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him. For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust.” Though our “days are like grass” and we are soon gone, “the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children’s children, to those who keep his covenant and remember to do his commandments” (Ps. 103:13–18). Remember, “you are not your own, for you were bought with a price” (1 Cor. 6:19–20).
Rest. It’s a difficult word, and I’ve failed to place and describe it in my life. There are many days when I turn from rest—in my heart and with my priorities. I’m ashamed, tired, and needy. And so, I cry out in repentance, Abba Father, forgive me, for many were the days I did not rest in you. I am weary, yet I seem to run away from your presence even though your arms are wide open. Please hear my plea and bring me to Christ’s peace, in whom I eagerly long for eternal rest. In his name, amen.
Resting Away from Christ
Beloved, can you relate to the following three major issues I’ve noticed each time I sought rest away from Christ?
- A self-seeking stubbornness, keeping myself crushed and forsaken despite the work of Christ’s cross and leading me to conclude, from a bottomless pit, “I am but dust, and, therefore, I shall rest when I return to dust.”
- A self-perceived, Christless worthlessness, where my past defines my present and the pressures I face convince me with the lie that “I do not deserve rest.”
- A self-inflicted condemnation, deeming myself sentenced to lashes, expecting falsely that such punishment will ultimately fulfill a works-righteousness requirement because of the lie that “this is my penance, my cross.”
Oh, how arrogant and foolish I am—and, like you, I hurt too.
How do we rest in God’s rest in a burnout culture that demands every inch of our lives, 24/7? We have every opportunity to hear Christ first thing in the morning, but we deliberately turn away from him. Our phones, calendars, and sinful pursuits claim a higher priority, leaving only scraps for God.
How Do We Rest in God’s Rest in a Burnout Culture That Demands Every Inch of Our Lives, 24/7?
Brothers and sisters, this is not what God has created us for! We aren’t meant to live on the throne of our lives, demanding everything and clenching our fists against his love for us. We do not need to live as blind beggars, exhausting ourselves with work, sexual sins, or even seemingly innocent pleasures that won’t deliver what we need: rest and comfort in and through our God.
Without Christ, we walk toward a discouraging destination where we can only arrive tired and hopeless. And you know very well that sexual sins are waiting right around the corner to make that final kill as you sigh, exhausted, after your 14-hour shift.