Rest & Work

Everyday with God

Why do you spend money for what is not bread? And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me and eat what is good and delight yourself in abundance. Incline your ear and come to Me. Listen what you may live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, according to the faithful mercies shown to David.
Isaiah 55:2-3
'It never works to ask people to do for you what only God can do. It never works to wait for God to do what he has clearly called you to do.
 
Here's the principle (which surely is easier to write out than it is to live): you can't look horizontally for what you will get only vertically, and you can't wait vertically for what you have been called to do horizontally. We get these two confused again and again. The person next to you is never a safe source of your happiness because that person is flawed and will inevitably fail you in some way. Only God is ever a safe keeper of the security, peace and rest of your soul. Here is the bottom line- earth will never be your savior. Earth was created to point you to the One who alone is able to give peace and rest to your searching heart. Yet today many people say they believe in God, but they shop horizontally for what can be found only vertically.
 
On the other hand, there are many people who give in to the temptation to do the opposite. They wait for God to do for them what he has clearly called and empowered them to do. God promises to provide but he calls us to labor, pray and give. God not only determines outcomes, but he rules over the means by which those outcomes are realized.'*
 
Here we see Mr. Tripp delineating the struggle that is common to all of us. We are confused about the life of faith, that it is all about rest and work. Sometimes we expect results by only resting, when God has clearly called us to work. We see and experience this in relationships by believing that it is God's responsibility to make all things well, rather than participating in the process of confession and forgiveness. And other times we expect others to be our source of inner joy, failing to remember that only our vertical relationship with God can fill our need for peace, joy and happiness.
 
Just for today, remember that we must look vertically for rest and at the same time be active in the work God has called us to do.

Questions for reflection:
 
+ What are you looking for horizontally, that must come from a vertical relationship with God?
+ What has God called you to do (work) that you have been expecting God to do for you?
 
 
*New Morning Mercies by Paul Tripp.                                                        
365 devotional readings with a compelling gospel-centered thought, followed by an extended meditation for the day. Focused less on behavior modification and more on helping people encounter the living God, this resource equips readers with the good news that they need to trust in God’s goodness, rely on his grace, and live for his glory—day in and day out.
 
Available on Amazon and also in the NorthPoint bookstore.
ISBN: 978-1-1-4335-4138-4
Linda Miller | Ministry Development

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