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A few years ago, through my leadership coaching certification, I discovered the importance of knowing oneself. Part of my certification was to learn, by taking different tests, several aspects of my personality that dictate my behavior.
I discovered my top five strengths along with my spiritual gifts, core values, temperament, and character traits. I had fun taking all the tests and dedicating time to recognizing their results in my behavior.
I am also a wife and mom who works from home part time, with a little ministry on the side. I use my days off to catch up with chores, read a book, or meet with friends and family. I am always doing something—and that is how the combination of those test results describes me—a busy bee.
I used to take pride in that, wearing busyness as a badge of honor, until my lack of sleep, constant distraction, and neglect of some priorities convicted me and brought big consequences in my life.
Thankfully, we have God—and He cares! Seeking His wisdom, I came across Hebrews 4, and that really hit home: Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it (Hebrews 4:1 NIV). We can go on with the chapter, but this first verse says it all.
Who would not want to enter His rest? I think I am pretty good at inviting the Lord to set my days. I am aware of His presence in most things I do, but I have found that His voice becomes louder and clearer when I rest in His presence. When I rest, I become more productive, caring, and loving (just ask my husband).
When we rest in God, we don’t just recharge our energy, we soften our hearts to become more like Him. "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts" (Hebrews 4:7).
It has been very challenging for me to slow down and learn a new rhythm, but the Lord is merciful and forgiving. I still stumble at times, but I have discovered a few tools that have helped me, such as noticing how I’m feeling and catching my thoughts if they don’t line up with His ways. I have a printed-out list of words on my fridge, and having a more detailed vocabulary about how I’m feeling helps me to stop and consult with the Lord. This may seem silly, but acknowledging my emotions helps me go to the Word. And this is what His Word says:
For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
Yes, indeed, it does! It judges my thoughts and attitude, and it helps me redirect to what is important for the Lord, not for me. I am now more attentive to my daughters’ conversations; more intentional about spending time with my husband; and I stop and pray for others instead of telling them, “I’ll pray for you” and then doing that later when it’s more convenient.
If you are a busy bee like me, I invite you to take a break and just be!
Prayer: Lord Jesus, I thank You for calling me to rest with You. I thank You for slowing me down to hear Your voice better, to refocus on what’s important, and to keep my eyes on You alone. I choose to put the distractions and obligations away for a while and simply rest in Your presence. Amen.
Scripture is quoted from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
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