No Rest for the Weary
By Heather Klein
I stared at the tables filled with what looked like dozens of oversized fortune cookie fortunes.
“Go to the tables, and pick the quote that stands out to you the most,” she said.
We were at our annual Journey staff retreat at a beautiful mission in Oceanside to slow down and listen to God. For this particular exercise, the retreat leader placed quotes and Bible verses printed and cut out into long, skinny strips of paper on multiple 6ft. tables around the room.
And they were low grade making me mad.
After reading a few of the quotes, that said things like, “a creative mind requires a rested mind” and “if one cannot rest in their own home, how do they expect others to,” we all started sensing a theme.
Telling a parent of three small children to make sure they get rest is like telling a highly agitated person to calm down.
It only makes it worse.
As I read more and more quotes and watched my coworkers grabbed strips that spoke to their hearts, I wanted to scream:
“I GET IT! I’m tired and that makes me bad at things! Now who’s going to come over and take care of THREE children under four without expecting me to clean my house first and NOT charging me more than the price of a pair of designer jeans for less than three hours away from my kids?!”
I didn’t scream.
Instead, continue to sift through quotes, “there is virtue in work and there is virtue in rest…blah, blah, blah”…
As I search, familiar feelings of guilt start bubbling in my soul. That negative voice says I’m doing too much, that if I would just quit school I could find rest.
I’m not okay with that voice.
I don’t to ignore God’s call to something that requires this degree.
And since I can’t quit my job, motherhood, or fixing the hole in my wall, my only option is to not rest.
Then I see it.
The one quote that says something different.
It’s not really a quote at all, but a verse from the Psalms.
“It is surely true that I find my rest in God. He is the God who saves me.” – Psalm 62:1
I pick up the strip of paper and take it back to my seat.
It is a treasure for my weary soul in a sea of false gold.
I reread the words…”I find my rest in God.”
I let them sink in. I examine what is really being said here…and then pause and think on what is not being said.
Rest in God. I will find my rest in God.
I don’t have to find rest in saying “No.”
I don’t have to find rest in quitting the things I value, the things that give me hope and life.
I don’t have to stop the madness to respect the Sabbath.
All I have to do is turn to Him and say, “Give me rest.”
If He is the source of my strength, if He empowers us to lay hands on the sick and see them healed, and He infuses us with discernment so that we can know the things we don’t understand…
Why can’t he also pour into my body rest?
Is it not the same as asking for strength without lifting a weight?
Why is rest something I must “do” instead of something I can ask for?
I can find my rest in God.
I can still do all the things and also rest.
In everything there is balance.
Let’s be clear, I say no to plenty.
But for me, in this season of life, rest won’t look like doing less.
There will always be another little person needing my attention. I can guarantee, someone will be crying inside the walls of my house at least 83% of the time.
I’ll just hang on to my strip of paper, reading it several times a day until it’s memorized…
It is surely true that I find my rest in God. He is the God who saves me.
Heather Klein is the Connection Director at Journey Community Church, an alumni of University of Alabama #wherelegendsaremade, currently a student of Bethel University, she’s has be married for 14 years and a mom of three!