October 20, 2010

Forced Rest

Written by Wisdom Hunters

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- October 20, 2010

“He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters.” Psalm 23:2

Sometimes the Lord makes His children create margin in their life. He understands that a life without real rest can become graceless and grumpy. It may be physical illness, emotional overload, spiritual fatigue or ruptured relationships that begin to scream for attention. The flesh thinks it can continue with little or no rest, but the spirit knows better.

We may work through our fatigue and fake it for a while, but eventually we hit an un-scalable wall, without anything to give anymore. Jesus knows we are extra vulnerable during these tired times and He makes a way of retreat and rest. His gentle and loving care calls us to come apart with Him. It’s much better to heed His invitation for intimacy than to move down the road without Him. Resting in the Lord invigorates and inspires.

Does rest have to be mandated by our Master or can it be done willfully? A wise man or woman understands the need for rhythms of rest in their schedule. This is why a good nights sleep and occasional naps are necessary. Weekends, especially Sundays are made for rest, reflection and rejuvenation. If we are intoxicated by activity, we run the risk of living in a restless hangover. Real rest allows us to recover and unwind in His presence.

Like green pastures are pleasant and fulfilling for any animal dependent on the earth, so God’s heavenly resources feed our soul, fill our mind and hydrate our heart. Are you tired and overwhelmed? Do you feel alone and deplete of any energy to engage with others? If so, take the time to get away with God. Say no to the unnecessary and yes to the necessary. The most productive life accomplishes more by doing less. It rests in Him.

Most importantly, allow the Lord to lead you by faith into a quiet place. Sit by the soothing silence of still waters and drink in the majesty of God’s creation. You know Jesus is leading you—when you intentionally engage in solitude for the purpose of hearing His voice. Lie on His green grass and look up, so your gaze is on God. Don’t resist His required rest—instead cease and desist activity, embrace and celebrate His rest.

“When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?” (Psalm 8:3-4). The grandeur of God’s glory comes down to care for you.

Do I voluntarily engage with eternity in quiet places? Does my life rhythm require rest?

Related Readings: Exodus 31:13; 2 Samuel 22:33-34; Zechariah 10:1; Romans 9:11

Boyd Bailey is the author of Wisdom Hunters daily devotional and two devotional books, Infusion and Seeking Daily the Heart of God


  1. TMoffitt says:

    Thank you so much! I woke up feeling very overwhelmed and tired; however, I made a decision to cut back on some things before reading this devotional. I am at a place where I miss God and I have been compromising my relationship with Him in order to get things done. Now I am depleted and restless…no more. As much as I feel I have to get things done…the reality is, I don’t. I am learning that the things in which I am able to finished is all that is necessary for the day and I will not beat myself up about it.

  2. cwb says:

    you do have a lot of insight in GODS holy word I am surprised that you find the sabbath day as sunday and not saturday which means day of rest if you look and study the book of genesis his word says that he rested on the sabbath day and he also says keep the sabbath day holy and if you take a look at the jews on there day of worship you would see that they have been keeping the sabbath day for thousands of years remember sabbath day keepers have the seal of GOD on there foreheads

  3. Nikii says:

    I had just gotten off the phone with my husband when I read this devotional this morning. Literally, my words to my husband were, “I feel like my life is spinning out of control right now. I am so busy and have so much going on that I feel overwhelmed. Please pray for me that I can get things organized and prioritized – the house, activities with our son, my mind, my soul.” God truly used these words to speak to me DIRECTLY today!! I need to slow down and rest in Him. I praise Him for how good He is!!! Thank you, Mr. Bailey, for these words that spoke right to my heart today.

  4. Laura says:

    These devotionals keep coming at the most amazing times. God is using them to make some pretty strong points in my life.

    By the way, Is the related reading Rom. 9:11 correct for this devo?


  5. Boyd Bailey says:

    You are welcome, I need this constant reminder to trust Him, so I can rest in Him. Have a blessed week and weekend! In Christ, Boyd

  6. Ryan Bennett says:

    Just throwing this out there but I find it interesting that Sunday is referred to as especially made for rest. I would refer you to Exodus 20:8-11. The solemnity of the Sabbath was never transferred from Saturday to Sunday in the Bible either, that’s a misconception. The Lord in his awesome foresight has given us a day for rest, it’s Saturday, the Sabbath. You can check your calendar Sunday always starts the week and Saturday ends it. Also the Lord rested on the Seventh day and sanctified it after he had created everything, Genesis 2:2. This would be before the founding of Israel so it’s not just a “Jewish” observance.

  7. Melvina Harmon says:

    I had to bring my mother into my home due to her Alzheimer condition, but I realize that I cannot care for her by myself. I am exhausted and my attitude is not loving, that’s not a good thing. I came to the conclusion I need to find a place for her to be cared for around the clock by experienced and helpful nursing attendants.
    Thank you for reminding me that without rest, we cannot be the disciples that Christ wants us to be. Jesus rested and took every opportunity to pray. I must follow His example. I was feeling guilty that I can not do everything to care for her myself. I know this is the best decision for her, and for me. It was a tough decision to make, and this message gave me the encouragement I needed to do right by her. Thank You

  8. Melvina Harmon says:

    Shortly after I posted my comment the Lord opened the doors for Mother to be placed in a Long Term Care Hospital facility. Doctor’s and R.N.s around the clock, an activity director provides wonderful outings, daily gatherings for fun and worship services. Mother loves all the attention and activities, and has a wonderful room mate. The facility is clean, friendly staff and she has found new friends. I thank the Lord for His generous answers to prayer!

  9. vicki says:

    Hi, i like your posts / the wisdom you share from God’s Word. I have a question though…. I have been told I am “sinning” because i do not get enough rest, but when i try to rest i frequently have severe nightmares. I know i am His child and He will take care of me, but it does not stop the sleep disturbances. I wish for proverbs 3:24 to be true in my life. I had a bad accident in december last year. One part I was thankful for was the first few weeks after it, all i could do was sleep, and i did not remember the dreams when i awoke. I almost wished it would have put me in coma for few months so i could rest. Do you have any helps / wisdom on how to deal with this?

  10. Boyd Bailey says:

    Vicki, so sorry to hear of your trouble with consistent sleep. My wife Rita will ask our Wisdom Hunter prayer warrior Gwynne to lift this to the Lord on your behalf.
    It sounds like your heart really wants to rest in the Lord, so we will pray to this end. Perhaps a sleep expert could shed some additional insight as well.

    A servant in Christ,


  11. admin says:

    Thank you Vicki, we will definitely lift you up in prayer.

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