When asked, “tell me your story… your testimony…” I usually chuckle and say WHICH one?! The one where I was lost, but then found by Jesus!? Or the one where I was betrayed by someone who I loved, but then was cared for by my King?! Or the one where they thought I had M.S., but then I didn’t ….oh, or the one where I just got a job and then broke my ankle, but then…..(well this story is still in process)???….. aaahhh funny stuff! You know what I’m talking about, what “testimony” are you currently going through? We have miles of testimonies and certainly there will be more to follow. Chapters of cliff-hanging adventures with God’s power on display for all to see; excerpts where we’ve deceived ourselves and chose to do the wrong thing, but God in His loving mercy saved the day; paths through the dark shadowy forests of defeat, deception and painful betrayal that lead us to the healing cross, broken and bruised; tales of worldwide mountaintop experiences where God showed up and displayed His glory just like He did with Mary or Moses.
But what about the quiet times…? The quiet seasons of life where despite all our efforts to move, create, expand, promote and even run – nothing seems to be “working.” Could it possibly be that He is at work in those wilderness places? Could He be preparing us for something down the line just by us being still? Could He be working on our behalf while we are resting and abiding in Him? Is it right for us to have seasons of stillness and what we think of as being hidden?
I’m here to tell all of you who are like me – the ones who love to race around and be warriors for Christ – YES, He is in the REST. Embrace it. Why? Because He is preparing us for the next season – the next level. We must trust Him, we must trust the process – our destiny depends on it. We must hear His voice, we must be still. (1 Kings 19:11-13, Psalm 46:10) The rest is training. It is training us to rely on Him for our peace. To rely on Him for our provision, to rely on Him for our emotional needs. He WILL strip away everything that we lean on that is not of Him to grow us and prepare us. It is an honor to be trained in rest and abide in Him. I don’t want to miss out on what He is doing and I will submit.
Abide: to wait for, to endure without yielding, to bear patiently, to accept without objection, to remain stable or fixed in a state
Rest: peace of mind or spirit, free of anxieties
I have been in such a season for close to three years. I have gone to the Lord, I journal and I hear His voice. He says, “rest my child.” He says, “heal my child.” He says,”just be with me and don’t worry about what the world thinks you should be doing. I am showing you new things and new ways.” Maybe He is saying similar things to you? Then I would say to you, be free to do what God has set in your heart and be encouraged because He is up to something! We will rest knowing that we are in training and He will be glorified through it.
So here is our prayer: Father thank you for the school of rest – for this season where I seem hidden – because I know that you are cultivating my character as I trust that you are up to something good. I will watch you show up and show off in my life. I praise you for this time where I will experience you on a more intimate level and will not worry about what everyone else is doing. Father, cause me to be true to your instructions. I look forward to hearing your voice of wisdom, hope, encouragement and direction. I embrace the secret place where you reveal your heart to me. Amen.