Almost two months ago, I moved to my new house called Nob Hill. In the process of packing up all my stuff, I unearthed a few of my old journals from my years in youth group, including my orbis. It seems weird reading through them and seeing what junk I was dealing with then, knowing that it was almost ten years ago in some cases. it just so happened that not many weeks after I moved, the seniors at Z-360 were given the reins to plan the Wednesday night. Already thinking about what was happening with me back when I was their age, which was only a few years ago but felt like a really long time ago, I listened intently to what each senior had to tell their peers as their last formal words. I remember mine fairly vividly and my notes for it are scrawled on the front of my orbis in permanent marker. “No Compromise” I talked about Christ being our foundation and compromise is letting that foundation crack. I mentioned the foolish builders from Matt 7 who built his house on sand (a cracked foundation) and when the storms came the house was destroyed. Apply what we know from Proverbs about wise vs foolish and I would have another blog post to put in the long line awaiting my attention, but this is not really what I want to do here.
Other things that are in my orbis are notes from Pastor Grady just after he came back from sabbatical. On Sept 7th, 2003 (which is an anniversary of a date that is imfamous for WW2 historians like me, but that’s just an off-hand dork moment), Grady talked about how Job was surprised by God with a sabbatical. His timing being perfect like it is, as I read through this trying to decide what entries I would put into my “reminising old journals” post, I was concurrently reading through Job. That is the connection to my previous post, 789, and to what follows here.
One of Grady’s texts that sunday was Philippians 2:5-8. In that passage, Paul tells of how Christ emptied Himself to the point of dying on the cross to be elevated to the Name above every name. Another pair of verses to check out is Isaiah 28:12-13, which talks about “religion” or “Precept upon precept” hindering the rest God wants to refresh the weary with. The next week, he used the Isaiah passage to point out that “Without rest, we cannot be emptied or filled with Jesus.” God created us with a need to rest, a true rest only found in Jesus per Matthew 11:28-30.
So now, Job was surprised with a sabatical when he was emptied of all he had, including I believe his friends. From that state of emptiness, he saw God and, though declared blamless by God, repented in dust and ashes. His reward was that the Lord restored to him two-fold what he had before.
Some interesting thoughts: We talk a lot about God testing Job, but it was Satan that was givent eh go ahead to attack Job, his possessions and his body. Perhaps instead, this was Satan testing Job and God proving His omniscience.
Nevertheless, the moral of this post is:
“Rest is a weapon!”
God’s provision of lineage is proved over and over in the bible, but some of the implicated lineages are fascinating.
Rest is pretty powerful.
I was doing a word study on “work” one time. To my amazement, I found that nearly every time work was mentioned in the first five books of the Bible, it was in relation to the necessity of rest. Rest makes work productive–and without rest, all our “trying” becomes meaningless.
You know, the tragedy is that not many people know how to empty themselves and so God has to do it to bring us back to Him and it usually hurts when He empties us. Or, we’re not willing to empty ourselves of everything in order to receive that real rest that Jesus offered in Matt 11:28. We don’t truly transfer the burden or trade the yokes.
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