In Exodus 20:9-10, God says, “Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates.”
When I close a week of work, it’s easy to feel the satisfaction of stopping and resting, especially if I feel it was a successful week. It can make me feel, “I earned this rest, and I am going to enjoy it.”
I think that’s a good feeling to have, but I think there is more to it than that. The deepest sense of rest we can have does not come because we earned it. It comes because Jesus earned it. It is a rest that reaches beyond our understanding. It is a free gift, so no matter what your week was like, take time to stop and accept this gift.
When someone goes to great effort to give a special gift, it’s the right thing to acknowledge it, accept it, and express appreciation to the person giving it. For us that person is Jesus. In Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus says, “Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.”
There’s an incredible amount of unrest in the world at this time, but that does not diminish the power of the rest that is a gift from God through Jesus. Let’s hide in that rest this Sabbath. Resting is not some kind cop-out or second-rate option. As we do our job in keeping the Sabbath, I believe we can be having a positive effect on the world around us. Let’s be in faith for that rest to fill our hearts, and then let’s radiate the same thing from God’s heart and our own hearts to a needy world. May this be a day that fills others with awe and amazement because they find that they can have that rest also.