Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "I Need Thee Every Hour"1 (Lyrics)
Romans 8:28 – And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. (NIV)
Matthew 11:28-29 – Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. (NIV)
Isaiah 26:3 – You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. (NIV 2011)
As a retiree, I have kept myself busy since my husband's death seven years ago, volunteering in many organizations. At times, the pace of these commitments was hectic, but I soldiered on, afraid not to be occupied and thus alone.
My parents, both in their nineties and with multiple health concerns, recently had to give up their independent living and be moved to a seniors' residence here in the town where I live. The transition included several hospital stays and a lot of travelling over a four-month period, and even now that they're settled, there have been additional hospital stays and medical concerns.
While I remain somewhat busy with volunteering, my heart is not in it anymore, and I seem to be in a holding pattern, waiting for the next crisis to arise. While I'm not anxious, I feel disconnected in some way from my life. I value my contemplative time much more than I normally do, and I can spend long periods doing nothing but thinking. I worry that I am becoming clinically depressed.
Then it occurred to me that maybe God is ordering a rest period for me. In all things, I try to trust in Him and remember that His outcome will not be affected by my anxiety or hyperactivity. Perhaps in the whirlwind of recent events, I have become fatigued, and I have forgotten to trust Him with my health, as well as that of others. I like to think that God is steering the ship right now so that I can recover my strength. Even God rested on the seventh day.
Christians tend to forget that with God, our efforts will be enough to do His work, and we don't need to labour excessively or to exhaustion. He wants us to have time to rest and recharge.
Hebrews 10:23 – Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. (NIV)
Prayer: Father God, we ask You to help us in our busy lives to remember that You are with us in the situations that we face. Remind us that You do not need our help to get Your work done, but rather, You want our enthusiastic participation, given freely. We praise and thank You for Your promise of being with us always, and we ask that You would help us to remember that when life gets stressful, You will hold us in Your loving arms while we rest. Amen.