It was Friday evening; I was sitting on my back porch in the quiet.

It had been a rough week. One of those weeks that seemed like no matter what came your way, it did not work the way you planned. It felt as if I had been trudging through quicksand all week long. I was exhausted.

Even though it was evening I was still working diligently in hope of making the following week lighter. It doesn’t make sense now, but I wanted to complete some things now and not wait until next week. That way, it would give me time to get done what I had to do the following week. I was trying to check off my list so to speak. It was a lot.

I needed a few moments of silence.

As I sat on my porch swing alone, God began to speak to me. He showed me that I needed rest. Not physical rest – soul rest.

When work and ministry become busy and challenging, it is not unusual for me to work long hours, including Saturdays. With some changes of late, it seemed as if I was working 24/7. At least that is how it felt – now I had a week of putting out one fire after another and frankly, I was feeling burned out myself.

Sitting there in the quiet, I knew God was telling me to push pause – and really push pause. He informed me to refuse to check emails, messages or anything else for the weekend. My only job was to spend time with Him and in the Word of God.

It has been a long time since I have gone three days without checking email or phone messages – this would be a challenge for me. Yet, I knew He was right – He always is. I moved my email folder off my phone and locked the office. I put my phone on silent and made a firm decision to find rest.

Psalm 62:5 says, “For in God alone my soul waits in silence and quietly submits to Him.”

Matthew 11:28 says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

I knew it was in this place of submission to Him that I would find rest. Rest is defined as resting, dwelling, habitation. I would have to make my habitation in Him alone.

Once we find rest, our strength returns as well as our focus.

Rest allows our mind, body and soul to be refreshed. Refreshed is defined as; to give new strength to, to invigorate, to relieve after fatigue, and to refresh the body. To revive.

Revive! Yes, that was what I needed.

Exodus 33:14 says, “My presence will go with you and I will give you rest.” And Acts 3:19 says, “times of refreshing come from the presence of the Lord.” It’s all about His presence.

It is vital that we find rest, the God kind of rest. Especially during challenging times. If we fail to enter His rest, our strength will fail, and we will give in to the fatigue. However, as we take time to rest in God, His joy will be our strength. In His presence is fullness of joy. In that joy is our strength.

Monday morning I will return to work with a renewed strength and peace. It will come from time in the presence of God and His unfailing Word.

Friends, when things get hard, or busy, make sure you rest. Not just physically – rest your soul as well. That kind of rest is found in God alone. No other place will revive you like His presence does.

Jesus, Himself, often got alone for times of rest. He knew well the value of the presence of God. He knew the importance of resting in God. May we know this truth as well. Rest brings forth refreshing and revival – may you be refreshed and revived this week, spirit, soul and body.

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