Audio Messages

Sun, Jun 07, 2015

Resting in Jesus

Resting in Jesus

by Peter Saputo
   "Let us therefore fear lest a promise being left of us entering into his rest
   any of you should seem to come short of it."
  (Hebrews 4:1)

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart:

and ye shall find rest unto your souls.


What does it mean to find rest for our souls as Jesus promised in Matthew 11:28-29? Rest is a calm in the midst of the storms of life. It is a refuge in the arms of God. It is a place of confidence just above the raging waters. Rest is an inner state of calm which is often in total contrast to the torment which our bodies experience in a tumultuous surrounding environment that opposes God and those who follow Him. The Scriptures are full of examples of those who walk through the valley of the shadow of death and yet experience a meaningful state of rest and a peace that truly does surpass understanding, finding no rational explanation other than God is an awesome Father to all His children in all situations!

In 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 the scripture provides examples of the rest that He provides to His beloved children:

“We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;

 persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed.”

Consider these two verses which describe the personal experiences of believers who are enduring fiery trials:

The Environment

My Inner Being

“troubled on every side”
many are against me - no matter which direction I look, my eyes and         mind see no escape

“not distressed”
My God is with me, He will not forsake me, and I believe and know
    He has a plan and a purpose even though I see it not!
“perplexed”
I do not see or find any way of physical escape
 
“not in despair”
My God is with me, He will not forsake me, and I believe and
know He has a plan and a purpose even though I see it not!
“persecuted”
I am hated and many are violently trying to destroy me
 
“not forsaken”
My God is with me, He will not forsake me, and I believe and
know He has a plan and a purpose even though I see it not!
“cast down”
my enemies have pushed me to the ground, shamed me,
and rejoiced in their claimed victory
“not destroyed”
My God is with me, He will not forsake me, and I believe and
know He has a plan and a purpose even though I see it not!

Salvation is for those who surrender their will to the Lord Jesus, follow His compelling call, travel to the outside of the camp, identify with the cross, and, for the prize set before them, despise the suffering and shame of the world, clinging to Him tightly. When knowing Him becomes the great passion of our lives, even the fellowship of suffering becomes a precious and sweet experience. To know His mind and His desires, to take upon ourselves His heart of compassion and identify with His suffering, even to the point of giving up our lives for Him or for those around us, is the marker of true salvation, the description of and reason for the life of the faithful.

When we face troubles, persecutions, rejection, sickness, or death, do those situations in our life seem to keep us from experiencing peace and rest in Jesus?

If so, it is time to rethink our commitment to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Have we surrendered our will? Is it our will to identify with the cross which He bore for our sins? Are we truly thankful above all that our sins have been forgiven? Is Jesus truly the center of our life and being? When Christ is our life, peace and rest will follow and be our daily experience through our earthly journey, no matter how bumpy, troubled or opposed our path may be.

Perhaps it is time to inquire deeply within and be willing to ask the question: Have I ever truly entered His rest? Let us be those who live under the wings of the Almighty and do enter into His rest, experiencing the rest for our souls which Jesus promised to those who follow Him.