Daily Devotional from Pastor Mary 08-23-22

Intro: Most people who know me understand Monday is typically my day of “rest.” For this reason, I have asked my assistant, Jennifer, to write the Monday devotions for us. What do I do on Monday’s? Well, I don’t just sit on the couch and binge watch TV; rather, I spend time reading and meditating on God’s Word and doing the things that fill and restore me spiritually, emotionally, and physically. I spend the day in a kind of sacred rhythm enjoying the life God has given me. For example, I enjoy cooking and baking. I tell people it has always been a kind of emotional therapy for me. I turn on inspiring music or a good movie and I create tasty things; my heart smiles with God’s goodness. Rest also includes physical restoration by doing things like: taking a nice walk, participating in a stretch yoga class (many thanks to Lynne and Lynne—Method Fitness), and now includes taking an afternoon nap with my newborn grand baby, Amana Lynn. My rest is a delight and a joy because it is a Gift from my Creator. Monday is a day I love Jesus and Mary. We should all take a day of “rest.” This world will drain you, but God has designed a way for you to be restored and made full of good things.

Last Friday, we shared in Jesus’ discussion about the Sabbath—which means ‘rest.’ From the beginning of creation, God has provided the seventh day for a Sabbath. The number seven is symbolic for “fullness” and “wholeness.” The seventh day points to what God has always planned to do for us through His Son. We don’t help in salvation; we simply receive our Gift and allow Him to work in our lives. Jesus wanted the Pharisees—religious leaders—as well as his disciples to understand He is the Lord of the Sabbath who brings spiritual ‘rest’ to his people. To enter into this spiritual ‘rest’ means we commit and devote ourselves to a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Only then, can we “rest” in Christ’s supernatural peace, remain confident in our ongoing salvation and spiritual maturity, experience the strength of God working in our lives through the Spirit, and claim the assurance of one day having a heavenly home with God.

In our passage today, the writer of Hebrews impresses upon us the importance of entering into Christ’s spiritual rest. Sometimes people stop with just a knowledge of Jesus and think what they know assures them of an eternal home; but having a knowledge of Christ is not sufficient to enter into his rest. We must use faith in God’s promise to restore and make us whole. We must believe God will provide as we obey his commands. It is not too late to enter God’s spiritual rest and if you haven’t already done so, please ask Christ into your heart and believe in the work he alone can do in your soul (mind, will, and emotions), because he wants to make his home in you, today. Be sure your faith is place in the Lord of the Sabbath. Then, take a day to spiritually, emotionally, and physically get full of God’s goodness!

Hebrews 4:1-6 NLT Promised Rest for God’s People
1 God’s promise of entering his rest still stands, so we ought to tremble with fear that some of you might fail to experience it. 2 For this good news—that God has prepared this rest—has been announced to us just as it was to them (like the Jews leaving Egypt). But it did them no good because they didn’t share the faith of those who listened to God. 3 For only we who believe can enter his rest. As for the others, God said,
“In my anger I took an oath:    ‘They will never enter my place of rest,’”

even though this rest has been ready since he made the world. 4 We know it is ready because of the place in the Scriptures where it mentions the seventh day: “On the seventh day God rested from all his work.” 5 But in the other passage God said, “They will never enter my place of rest.”
6 So God’s rest is there for people to enter, but those who first heard this good news [Jews] failed to enter because they disobeyed God. 7 So God set another time for entering his rest [believing in Christ], and that time is today.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for welcoming me into the spiritual rest Jesus provides. As well, thank you for the restorative rest taking a Sabbath each Monday brings to my life. It is your way to prepare and make my soul full of good things, so I can be victorious in the week ahead. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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