“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
It’s no novel idea that many people in our city wear busyness as a badge of honour. We may not admit it but as much as we complain about our packed full schedules, when there is an opening, we naturally want to fill it. I am one of those people.
In all of the busyness, or what we might label “productivity,” I am often left feeling unfulfilled, like there is a deeper thirst within me unsatisfied. In serving God as a father, as a worker, as a church leader, I can still feel restless and distant from God.
The Chinese character of “busy” is made up of two components, a “heart” and “death.”
It is a simple ideogram that sums up the profound notion that busyness kills the heart. It may sound a bit too dramatic, but I think we can all agree that busyness takes a toll on us. It affects us physically and, beyond that, emotionally. I often find myself lethargic, less engaged, more irritable, and usually not the best person to be around.
But most important, busyness deeply affects us spiritually. When we are too busy and not finding proper rest in God, distance comes between us and Him and we start to care less about the things He cares about.
In a recent sermon, Pastor Brett said maintaining a proper size in relation to God is a lifelong adjustment. And when our schedules and minds are overwhelmed, it is easy for us to lose proper perspective. The greater danger is that we start to see ourselves as too important, as irreplaceable, as the one in total control. God fades to the back and we start to take centre stage.
In Psalm 46, the author is writing from a place of distress. He starts by declaring that “God is our refuge and strength,” and the only one who can help him. He is faced with the fear and uncertainty of war yet he finds the space away from the chaos to be still before God and to acknowledge and declare His sovereignty.
You might be stuck in a period of uncertainty or distress, or like most in our city, you might just be too busy and distracted from seeing who God really is. Our faith requires us to rest in God.
Psalm 62:5 says “Rest in God alone, my soul, for my hope comes from Him.” It is a commandment for us to rest on the seventh day as God himself rested. However, the Sabbath is not just about not working and going to church on Sundays. It is as much a cycle as it is also an attitude. And this practice of regularly stopping and acknowledging who God is takes discipline.
Sabbath unlike sleep, doesn’t feel like a must. If we don’t sleep for a long time, our body tells us that we need it or forces us to stop. But Sabbath doesn’t do the same, it backs away and we usually continue to function as usual, or so it seems, but our position and understanding in Christ takes a great toll.
Rest in God is vital to our faith, and is necessary for a healthy relationship with Christ and a rightful perspective of Him. Don’t let busyness deplete your heart, but let your soul be filled when you find true rest in Him.
Let us not let busyness rob our hearts by:
- Thanking God for being our sole source of true rest;
- Asking God to show us what we have missed and teach us how to rest in Him regularly.