Sunday, July 17, 2016

an invitation to be held.

For thus said the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, “In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength."

Isaiah 30:15

I hear this verse with a child on my lap, fighting me. The other kids are sitting by my side, doing their best to use their "church manners" and not to be distracting.  It's not working.

Rest and quietness!?  
I wish. 
Grumble. Resent.

But do I?
Do I really wish I had a quiet house and a short list and all the time in the world to rest, relax, and be still with God?  Or, if I had a quiet house and a short list, would I simply add things to the list until I had a noisy house and a full day again?

I'm driven, busy, and task-oriented to a fault.

Rest and quiet are about as natural to me as... well, returning, and trust.

Returning to the Lord. 
Returning, when my life has changed suddenly, to God Who does not change.
Returning, when darkness threatens to swallow me up, to The Light of the World.
Returning, after a failed battle with my own sin, to God Who forgives.

Ceasing from activity, from problem-solving, from justifying myself, and from worry,
and quietly resting in His love for me.

And remembering who I am, Whose I am.

A child of God.
Weak and loved. LOVED.

Mary hears the invitation to rest,  but Martha is distracted with her many things. I understand the distraction, I see the many, many, many things.  But Jesus speaks to me and to you with a rebuke-invitation: there is only one thing necessary!  Sit, child, and let me be your host.  Let me provide that which your soul needs.  You are not the glue that holds the world together: I am.

Let me hold you.

For thus said the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, “In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength."

Teach my heart to do what does not come naturally.  Open my eyes to the pockets of time in my day when I may rest in You.  I often miss those moments, when the children are quiet and no tasks are urgent, and I fill them up with mental chatter, worry, or little things that could wait.  May I not just breathe and to rest my body, but rest my heart as well, in You.  Fill me with returning and trust, and let Your strength be my strength as I enter this day.

In Jesus' name, Amen


  1. Love this.

    I will pray for this as well for you. I think so many of us Moms struggle to find that quiet time and rest in the Lord. I constantly have to keep reinventing my schedule to fit time in. When I was at home with my son, it took months before I finally convinced myself that his nap time would be my quiet time. And then I went to work and only recently have started waking up 45 minutes early to be able to find some quiet time alone with the Lord. I disrupts my physical rest, but I think it provides me with so much spiritual rest.

    Thanks for writing this!

  2. thank you Laura. I don't know where I'd be without 'naptime'!

    I am amazed though, how if I remember to do it, I can squeeze in small little moments of receiving, even at the kitchen sink or in the car, and God uses those to hold me up.

  3. I know what you mean, about wanting to get my "lists" done. But they never get done. And I know I would definitely be more nuts WITHOUT kids (to drive me nuts) than I am with them (driving me nuts!!;).

    As you said so well in your comment the other day, "I for one am glad for all these concrete little people who refuse to let me live in my mind for too long! "

    Sanity comes in strange forms, eh? :P

  4. Tt sure does.

    Sanity comes... through that moment I look out my window and see the sunset over the cornfield, or in the sweet kindness of a child who doesn't know he's being watched...
    and through that ridiculous moment when the boy's superhero moves land him on his bottom, and I remember how ridiculous my life is. :)


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