Have you ever noticed the exclamation points in Isaiah 62:10?
Go out, go out through the gates; prepare a way for the people! Build it up, build up the
highway, clear away the stones! Raise a banner for the people. (HCSB)
Have you been on this site long enough to know these rhythms by heart? Sabbath. Sleep. Stillness. Solitude. These rhythms are visible throughout Scripture, but they are spotlighted in two places:
- In the creation account we see our daily need for physical rest satisfied by sleep. Sabbath speaks to our relational needs. Relational needs are best met when we choose to cease working, when the focus is on “being” and not just “doing.” Sabbath opens the door to a day that fortifies our relationship with God and our relationships with those we love.
- Jesus’ life (highlighted in the gospels) testifies to the need for the spiritual rest found in personal prayer—stillness and a leader’s need for personal retreat – solitude – with the One who directs our paths, refuels our reserves and empowers our living, loving and serving.
I am always on the outlook for exclamation points in the Bible. These punctuation marks in Isaiah 62:10 focus my attention on what God wants emphasized. Granted, this verse is not speaking about rest specifically, but it is speaking about the Truth of God’s revelation. I believe it can be applied to Truth of rest and restoration.
- Go out, go out through the gates; prepare a way for the people! (The message) “Run Hard. Rest Well.” is for people, all people at all times. As believers, we have access to this truth. We need to make it known. We are invited (commanded) to go out of our way to invite, encourage and cheer each other on.
- Build it up, build up the highway – In order to prepare the way, we need to know the way. Do you know the restorative nature of rest? Are you doing the work of “building it up?” It takes effort. Determination. No need to wait, start today.
- Clear away the stones! – Learning how to rest is a journey. Obstacles will litter the path. Don’t let them surprise you. Be prepared to tackle the outside forces and the inside forces that attempt to make us “buy the lie” that overload is OK. It’s not.
- Raise a banner for the people. Be a banner. Make it bold. God’s way is made known (for better or worse) through us. As God has his way in our lives, God’s Truth shines out into the darkness.
When it comes to the four Rhythms of Rest, can you name them? Do you know them? Do you live them? Answering these questions honestly could change your life and the lives of those around you.
Hey – we’re still collecting questions. We would love to get a peek at your list. It is not too late, nor will it ever be, whether it’s a single question or a hundred – leave them in the comments below so we can hear from you. Are you in a small group? Collect a list from them too.
Have a great week!
Go Make A Difference
Last week, Josh began to raise up 400 new blood donors as a thank you for the 400 units of blood he’s required over the last 14 years. He gave away Red Diamonds, shared his message and thanked each donor for their precious gift. Each day, the U.S. requires more than 44,000 pints of blood to treat emergency room patients and others with serious, ongoing medical conditions. While the need for blood is constant, the supply of blood sometimes isn’t. Blood donations can dip around the holidays, making it important for donors to make and keep appointments to ensure a strong and stable blood supply for sick and injured people. Donations of platelets are also needed for ongoing patient care. When you give platelets, chances are someone very sick is waiting for your donation. Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org for more information.
If you’d like to be a part of Red Diamond Days and Josh’s desire to Go M.A.D. feel free to visit RedDiamondDays.com or the Facebook page where stories are being shared.
6 thoughts on “Exclamation Points”
When I think of this scripture two pictures come to mind. One is the way I used to do things….I would have picked up all the stones and carried them all until I reached the end of the journey. I might get strong, but I would be heavily laden! Two is the way I do things now. Still a lot of work, but better. Now I will pick up the stone and carry me to the side of the road, stack them up, and form a nice wall. Somehow I don’t think either of these pictures is a picture of rest. We have to move the stone out of our way and out of the way of others. We have to. But I think Jesus wants us to focus more on Him…on the journey…than on the rocks we encounter. I can see me on my hands and knees picking up stone and chunking them and hitting someone else on the head. Any thoughts? This is about rest…even as we travel the path.
I love the word picture you draw for us.
Each obstacle in my life on my journey to Jesus and to rest has to be dealt with under God’s guidance. Some I must steer clear of. Some must be dug up. Some I hop over. Some only Jesus can remove. He leads the way.
Onward my sweet friend.
How did you know I was thinking of you and praying for you? I can’t help but smile as I think of all y’all. Smile? In the midst? Of course. Why wait until morning for joy to come? He has already come and resides in all y’all. We’ve walked through the dark valley. We faced the fierce storms. We’ve climbed the high mountains and there are more coming, but today…so far…we come THROUGH…we aren’t staying in the dark places. And tomorrow’s storms…well, we’ll just get through them too. I love you. Hugs.
Why wait until morning.
We’re going to smile and sing …
even in the darkest places.
love and prayers,
Good day! Would you mind if I share your blog with my
facebook group? There’s a lot of folks that I think would really
enjoy your content. Please let me know. Many thanks
Good day, indeed!
I would love for you to share the blog.
There is a universal red thread that runs through our lives: overload and the exhaustion it produces.
God has a better way. We need community to cheer us on.
Thanks for being a champion of rest.