Monday, April 2, 2012

Then Comes the Rest

I believe in hard work. As a girl who grew up in the United States, learning what it takes to achieve the “American Dream,” that is not unique to me. Doesn’t it seem like if you’re not busy, you’re not working hard enough?

But let me tell you, busyness in the life of a missionary does not mean we are accomplishing more by not having time to breathe. It is a fight to not give in to burn-out. It is a challenge to live in the tension of wanting to work as hard as we can, while at the same time having to disconnect and let people accustom to our absence.

My worth is not measured by what I do, how much I do, and what I accomplish. My worth is discovered in what Jesus Christ has already done for me.

For that reason, I can rest.

I can breathe.

Because I am not working to prove my love for him; I am working just because he loved me first.

And he gave me the privilege of entering in to his rest.

Hebrews 4:9-11 says, “There remains, then, a Sabbath rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.”

For people who find themselves in vocational ministry, it is always tricky to know when to rest. After all, we have to work on Sundays.  But there is a Sabbath rest for us. However, we must “make every effort” to enter into it. “Wait a second, we have to work hard in order to rest? That seems a little wrong.”

It is WORK to let go. It is WORK to surrender. But we encounter rest when we do. That’s the promise.

Right now, we have begun the process of handing over the ministry in Cusco to our leaders who will be staying, namely our pastor. I want to tell you, THIS IS NOT EASY. But I have experienced the peace that comes with surrender. I do not know what is going to happen when I leave Cusco. But it is out of my hands, it is in God’s hands, and I have peace about that.

So I will rest. I will not sleep more, but I will find shelter in him. I will not work less, but I will make every effort to enter into His rest.

And I will let go. He will carry my burdens. I will take on his yoke.

And then comes the rest.