Matthew 11:28-30 “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. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Rest is freedom from labor or physical activity. God rested from His creation work after the sixth day and we are encouraged to rest from our working as well. Rest is important to the body and it is very easy to see the negative impact of lack of rest. Rest in the physical sense helps the body to heal, refresh and refocus
Apart from physical rest, there is the rest on the inside. The internal rest is what is sometimes called peace of mind. For example; when you make a deadline for a major project, your mind is at rest and you enter your rest as far as that project is concerned. Peace of mind is the rest that Jesus speaks of when He talks about giving rest to the soul. It is not a physical rest but a rest of the mind or ‘soul rest’.
Jesus continually showed how important rest is for the soul. A mind that does not have rest is usually weary and overburdened, always at work trying to get something figured out, anxious about things. It is tired and always feeling inadequate. A soul or mind that does not have rest strays easily in search of solutions. There’s always something to be figured out, to be worried about, anxious for.
On the other hand, a soul that has rest is at peace within itself and with its environment. It is gentle and humble because it doesn’t strive, it knows that the work is done, it doesn’t have to do anything more. Jesus asks, which of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life span? A soul that has entered into rest, concerning anything, has total trust in God for the expected outcome in that situation and doesn’t have to help itself.
We enter this rest by believing God’s word for every situation. Rest comes through receiving the word of God with faith. We are told that hearing the word but not combining it with faith or belief makes the Word of God of no benefit to the hearer. For the Word of God to be of benefit and take us into our rest we must believe it. When we believe in every situation contrary to God’s Word that ‘it is finished’ and that God had completed His work from the very foundation of the world, we are able to rest in His finished work.
After receiving the Word of God with faith, you must be willing to place or roll your work on Jesus Christ and take up His yoke and learn from Him. As the bible says, “anything He asks you to do, do it”. You show your faith in God by doing what His Word says. For example, when you have a need, you receive rest for your soul when you believe that He will supply all your needs and drop your anxiety in exchange for peace of mind.
Rest of mind, not be confused with apathy and not be confused with ‘having control’, is a definite gift and it is available to every believer that seeks it. This rest is not something that comes immediately or that is a one-time thing. It is something that must continually be sought after by reading the word of God and allowing it to bear fruit in your heart. It has to be backed by faith in the Word of God. It has to be received by faith and it has to rest on the Word of God.
Hebrew 3:10,11 “Though for forty years they saw what I did. That is why I was angry with that generation; I said, ‘Their hearts are always going astray, and they have not known my ways.’ So I declared on oath in my anger, ‘They shall never enter my rest.’”
Hebrew 4:2,3 “For we also have received the good news just as they did; but the message they heard did not benefit them, since they were not united with those who heard it in faith (for we who have believed enter the rest), in keeping with what He has said: So I swore in My anger, they will not enter My rest. And yet His works have been finished since the foundation of the world”
Psalm 46:10 “Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
Temitope Talabi is a founding member of The Trent Voices currently reside in Austin, TX. She graduated with a PharmD from Texas Southern University in Houston, TX. She works as a community pharmacist and spends her spare time writing to build and encourage others through the word of God. Temitope is also currently working on a series of self-help books created to empower people to take charge of their health and wellness, the first of which is scheduled to be released early next year.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.