For some reason this evening, as I was kind of in a daze over the wasted hours I had spent on a wild goose chase between two stores of the same chain, in trying to exchange a monitor still under the return date- as I understood it, etc., etc., etc.... And as I heard my wife, Deb talking about her problems at work. And as I thought on some of the extra stress I myself have experienced in the past weeks. Then I had to think- being helped with the journal my wife gave me for our recent anniversary- that indeed, I have really come into a more real rest, by and large. This is a rest, by faith in God. Believing that he is at work and that his promises are true. And that therefore, the burden is not on me. Not that I've arrived on this issue of rest. Just that I've grown, so that rest in God is substantial and more real for me.
Once I'm learning to live in that rest, then I am freed to seek to fulfill God-ordained responsibilities. When not really resting in God, one is simply trying to deal with life in a way that God can be, and often is left out. There is the kind of laboring that is really more like just trying to get through another day. Maybe with a few highlights and experience of God's grace here and there. But by and large a struggle to the end.
But learning the light yoke and labor that comes from the rest God calls us to in Christ, means freedom to labor with God, by the Spirit. To follow Paul's example, he did so putting all effort into it. But it was not futile. For God was energizing him by his power at work in him. Paul wasn't concerned about surviving, but in fulfilling God's calling for him.
So I reflected, not only on my new found substantial rest (compared to years of falling short of it), but my desire to better fulfill responsibilities at hand. Especially prayer for others, as well as other good works I find to do.
Rest and responsibility. Surely they go hand in hand. As we better get down the rest part, than we are able to concentrate better on the responsibility part. For only as we rest can we really do the works of God. Just another paradox in the long line of them we find in Scripture and in our life in God.