As I have been blogging about the glory of God so far this year, this month, I kept returning back to thoughts on what it means to rest in the presence of God. I did not realize exactly one year ago today, I posted a blog entry about rest, Refreshed as You Rest. It’s amazing to me how God has a unique way of reminding us how important this aspect of rest and worship is to Him and for our benefit.
The idea of soul rest is one that can only be experienced in the presence of God. Rest is not defined by the absence of physical inactivity. It is the intentional activity of exercising trust in God as we worship Him. It takes trust to worship God. When we completely rely on the presence of God to comfort, challenge, and change our souls then we are actively experiencing God’s rest.
Matthew 11:28 is an invitation for all of us to experience the rest of God. It says, “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Rest is only experienced when we go to God. We may attempt to enter into rest by going to lesser sources, but the rest our soul needs can only be provided by being with God.
Being present in the moment as we encounter the glory of God will usher us into rest. Think about it. Wouldn’t it seem contradictory to be in God’s presence but our soul is in turmoil? It’s just not possible. Glory demands the condition of our souls to be at rest. However, it is our choice, and we must be willing to “go there” in our worship.
When we worship in the glory of God it causes us to relinquish everything that hinders our ability to receive rest. Psalm 37:7 says, “Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him…” The longer we linger in God’s presence the more His rest overshadows our souls. This is the beauty of worship!
When Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden, they experienced rest as a result of their fellowship with the presence of God. This kind of rest speaks to our thoughts and emotions. That’s what glory does. Whenever we have authentic worship we will receive authentic rest from God’s presence. When we can rest in God we can receive the peace of God.
Externally and internally, we will all find ourselves in one season or another dealing with a myriad of reasons that cause us to desire rest. As much as I enjoy going to the beach, I must acknowledge there is no physical location that can bring the kind of rest that can only be experienced when I am in fellowship with my creator. There is a longing in my soul that craves the presence of God. There is no substitution – no other will satisfy.
My prayer for you is to encounter resting glory that permeates every aspect of how you live… every way of thinking, every decision you make, every feeling attached to matters of your heart. May the rest promised to you be accessed each time you worship in the glory.
**Note: If you’d like to read the post from last year on rest, here is the link: