Amplify rest. It sounds counterintuitive. How can I crank up the volume on rest? It doesn’t really make sense, but I’ve just felt the Lord quietly encouraging me to rest. And this morning as I looked at the word “amplify” written on my arm in Sharpie, it became clear that I need to amplify rest. Enlarge rest. Magnify rest. Deepen rest.
A few days ago my neighbor called asking me how she could pray for me. Mama T is a “spiritual parent” to my husband and I. She has made it her assignment to encourage us in our walk with God, support us in our marriage, family life, and parenting, and be an absolute prayer warrior for us. Praying for our every need. She said she felt like she was supposed to pray for me and asked what my specific needs were. I couldn’t think of a thing.
My husband and kids are healthy and relatively happy. Things have been going appropriately well. My writing, while a little slower lately, has been all right. I said offhandedly, that I was feeling a little sleepy. It had been a busy weekend of volleyball tournaments and gymnastics meets along with babysitting for a friend and visiting our adult children. I felt like I needed a weekend to recover from my weekend. She said, “Okay then. We’ll pray for that.”
The next day she popped over for a visit, and as soon as she saw me she said, “I can see in your face just how tired you are. We’ll pray for that again.” She stopped right then and there and prayed that God would multiply the hours as I slept so I could get caught up on missed sleep, that I could rest and feel refreshed.
“It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late, and work your worried fingers to the bone. Don’t you know He enjoys giving rest to those He loves?” ~Psalm 127:2
Sometimes I get so caught up in my to-do list that I forget to take time to rest. And when I do rest, I feel a little guilty knowing there are other things I could be doing. But He loves giving rest to me when I’ll accept it. That is the key. Accepting it. Settling in to it. Letting His presence and His rest envelope me. Rejuvenating me. Making me ready for all that He wants me to do. Ready for His to-do list.
This morning, I could tell that while I slept well last night, I still don’t quite feel “caught up.” And I feel Him telling me it’s okay to rest today. I have another busy weekend coming up. I’ll need to be ready.
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to Me. Get away with Me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with Me and work with Me — watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with Me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” ~Matthew 11:28-30
And I want this. To go to Him. Get away with Him. Recover my life. Find real rest. Walk with Him. Work with Him. Do what He does. Oh how I want to find unforced rhythms of grace. Unforced. Rhythms. Grace. Hang out with Jesus. And learn to live freely. Lightly even. Yes! I want this. I want the rest. I want His rest. I want Him. So for now, I’ll rest. . .