Happy New Year Everyone!
As I was in prayer recently, I sensed the Lord speaking to me about the 3 R’s. Normally, the 3 R’s would be reading, writing, and arithmetic – but that’s not what I sensed He was telling me. These 3 R’s were Rest, Receive, and Rejoice. I believe that this is what the Lord wants for us this year.
When people think of the word rest, they think it means to sit back and do nothing. However, that’s not what I sense the Lord is saying here. God doesn’t want us to “stagnate” or put the dreams He gave us on a shelf. He doesn’t want us to be paralyzed with fear as to what we should do next. He wants us to take the next step into all that He has for us – even if it means stepping out into unfamiliar things. To then trust Him to tell us to move forward, or to go in a different direction. This is what the Lord means when He tells us to rest. It means He wants us to “rest” in Him – not fearing about moving ahead, but trusting in Him to guide us every step of the way. Yes, he may tell us not to move right away and to wait for specific direction. But even then, we’re speaking to Him and asking Him about what He desires us to do.
The Lord also wants us to physically rest too. We should not forget to take time for our minds, bodies and spirits to replenish. God is a God of balance. If we “burn our candle at both ends” we will burn out completely. Rest in God. Take His lead and move when He tells you to move and stay when He tells you to stay. He is still our fire by day and our cloud by night as we seek Him with all our hearts.
Next we need to receive from Him. We’re so busy doing – whether it’s on our jobs or for others – and that’s not a bad thing. Yet we don’t allow the Lord to re-fill us. We need to allow ourselves to receive from the Lord so we don’t run on “empty.” Blessings, yes – but also direction, encouragement, and most of all – His love. Sometimes we just need to let God “love on us.” Sometimes we need to stop and take notice of the little things He does for us each day that reveals His love for us. I wrote about this in an article for Inner Voice Magazine called God’s Love Notes. (You can read it by going to www.innervoicemag.com and clicking on Faith, then Reflections, and then the title.)
Let’s look at rejoice. The hardest thing to do when we go through a difficult time is to rejoice. God’s Word tells us to rejoice in the Lord at all times. Why? Because it gives us strength. In Nehemiah 8:10, we read that the joy of the Lord is our strength. I know that many of you have found that when you’re discouraged or depressed and put on worship music, it lifts your spirits. When that happens, we get energized. When we thank the Lord for all He has done, it seems He just does more, then we rejoice more, and so on! We don’t thank Him to get, but very often that’s a result.
My wish for you in 2011 is the ability to rest in the Lord, receive all He has for you, and rejoice in His goodness! Happy New Year!