Everything is on-demand these days. If you want to watch your favorite TV show or movie, just a few clicks of the remote control and Voila – enjoy the show! Hungry? You can call Uber to deliver your favorite meal from your favorite restaurant. Need a special item not available at your local Walmart? Amazon can deliver whatever you need, often with same-day delivery. On-demand means no waiting to gratify your needs.
When you consider the really important things in life – and realize they are not “things” at all – on-demand for your health or your family relationships is a rather elusive goal. Your inner peace, the rest for your soul, is probably the least on-demand thing of all. For some, it is the busy-ness of life that robs you of the joy and peace God has promised through faith in the LORD Jesus. For others, amidst great turmoil in the world across all the diverse people groups, you lose the joy inside that keeps you going. And some, overwhelmed by tragic circumstances, find nothing but darkness in a troubled soul.
Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. For we also have had the good news proclaimed to us … Now we who have believed enter that rest… (Hebrews 4:1-3, NIV)
By faith in the LORD Jesus, you have HIS rest within your soul. Jesus, in fact, is the rest for your soul. In the beginning, after creating the universe, the world, and the diversity of life it contains, the LORD rested from His creative work. And after offering Himself as a sacrifice for every sin of every person for all time, Jesus rested from His redemptive mission. He “sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” (Hebrews 1:3, NIV) For every Christian, His rest is available.
Why then do you still find yourself restless? The LORD has revealed the answer in His word:
Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you. For you, Lord, have delivered me from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before the Lord in the land of the living. (Psalm 116:7-9, NIV)
The LORD’s rest for you has not disappeared, it has not moved on, it has not become elusive. You and I are the ones who leave that rest for the poor substitute that life has to offer. You and I can also find that rest since the LORD Jesus never, ever, no never forsakes us (Heb. 13:5).
The eternal reality is the LORD Jesus and His rest never really left you. You left His rest for other things.
And the beauty of our relationship with the LORD Jesus is that you only need to return to Him. In order to return to Him you must turn from whatever pursuit has seemingly robbed your rest. Turn away from whatever circumstances have blinded you from the reality of His rest. Lay down your works, the hammer and shovel that keeps you so wired and focused on what is only temporary after all.
Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you. For you, Lord, have delivered me from death… (Psalm 116:7-8, NIV)
Since you are reading this life lesson, you have been spare from death. Rejoice that God has given you one more day to walk with Him in the land of the living. Turn and return to His rest. The LORD Jesus is good to you and good for you – nothing ever changes that reality.
The world has great power of distraction but God is greater than anything in the world. His rest is yours at any time. But you must make the choice to return to His rest.
There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest… (Hebrews 4:9-11, NIV)