A man who is sort of a mentor to me told me I needed to learn to rest, to let go. “You can’t receive with a hand that’s full,” he said. It was hard at first to understand what I was holding on to. Thinker that I am, I spent quite a bit of time thinking about it. The problem with thinkers is they tend to, well, overthink, which then tends toward a lack of peace, the very opposite of rest.
Needless to say, I got rest issues.
Teaching from his You’ve Already Got It! series on the Gospel Truth, Andrew speaks about rest:
“It’s not a matter of getting God to do something; it’s a matter of resting in what He’s already done. . . . The Sabbath was a picture of this rest that we have in the Lord. . . . When God commanded the Old Testament Sabbath—that man take a rest on the seventh day—it was [a] picture that everything was really from God. God had already provided.” (brackets added)
In other words, when I’m in a position of rest, it’s because I understand that God’s got this. It’s because I’m trusting in the Lord.
In Matthew 6:25-26, Jesus said it another way:
Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?New King James Version
I can see how what Jesus said here applies to many areas of the Christian life. Take finances, for example. I’ve not heard many preachers go to the above passage in Matthew when they talk about sowing and reaping. They usually reference only 2 Corinthians 9:6-10 and put the emphasis on sowing in order to reap. The problem with that is, when this passage in 2 Corinthians is not taught in balance with the one in Matthew, people tend to trust in their sowing rather than trust in God. Where’s the rest in that? When I’m focused on what I must do, there isn’t any room for rest.
I’m learning that a better way to prosper is to put the emphasis on trusting God, which is all about the heart.
During the same broadcast, Andrew shares this about the Sabbath rest:
“When God first gave the Jews this command about the Sabbath, did you know that there was nobody on the face of the planet that took one day out of seven off? Man, they were working seven out of seven days, fifteen-hour days, laboring and bringing forth fruit by the sweat of their brow. And yet here come God’s people, and they take one out of seven days off. . . . They would have had less. But actually, it was just the opposite. Because they were trusting in God and relying upon Him and following His command, the Jews prospered more with just six days of labor than all of the other nations did with seven days of labor.”
That’s awesome! Andrew goes on to say that the Sabbath “was a picture to them that God was their source, and all of their effort was just a response to God. It was a cooperation with God.”
My excessive thinking was getting in the way of cooperating with God. And I was only getting what I could come up with on my own, which wasn’t very much. But when I co-labor with the Lord, putting the emphasis on trust in Him and His plan, I cease from fretting. I rest assured, “for we who have believed do enter that rest” (Heb. 4:3, NKJV).
Have you entered into that rest? Share your story with us in the comments below. Also, don’t forget to watch Andrew’s You’ve Already Got It! teaching, airing all this month on the Gospel Truth, or watch missed episodes on our website or on Roku.