Have you ever felt restless in your emotions? Recently, I was confronted with a problem that I was just tired of facing.
I felt anxious and frustrated.
Have you ever been there?
Sometimes we can feel like our thoughts are on a hamster wheel – going around in circles but not getting anywhere.
Yet in the midst of emotional turmoil, Jesus gives us a wonderful promise:
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28).”
But you might wonder: How do you enter into the rest that Jesus promises?
Here are 4 steps to apply when you need rest for your soul:
1. Believe Him
As you saw in Matthew 11:28, Jesus gave us His promise on rest. Belief in that promise depends on knowing a critical truth about His character: He never lies.
Numbers 23:19 says,
God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?”
To experience rest for your soul, you must believe Jesus when He says:
- Mental and emotional rest are available
- Jesus is the source of rest
2. Come to Him
People often joke about having a “Come to Jesus” moment – that moment when they must face the truth.
Even people of the world know deep down that Jesus is the Truth!
When someone uses this phrase, they are admitting they can’t handle their problem alone and need help.
When I experienced that period of frustration, I knew I needed a ”Come to Jesus” moment.
The problem was affecting my attitude and not in a good way!
I decided to go for a walk outside to talk to the Lord about the situation. I knew I needed His perspective, apart from my feelings about it.
No one is better qualified to discuss our problems with than the Lord.
Jesus is compassionate and understands our problems because He experienced the human condition at its most extreme.
In His Earthly body, Jesus experienced:
- Being misunderstood
- Being aggravated/frustrated with people (see Matthew 17:17)
- Not being appreciated/thanked (see Luke 17:11-17)
- Physical torture leading to death
So I entered into His gates with thanksgiving (focusing on that for which I was thankful) and into courts with praise (praise to God for His grace covering my life).
I expressed my assurance that He would give me the proper perspective to view my problem.
Guess what? He did.
With that proper perspective, the Lord gave me the solution.
Now, having the solution is one thing but doing what the Lord says is quite another – especially if it is difficult.
That’s where walking with Jesus comes in.
3. Walk with Him
In Matthew 11:29-30, Jesus instructs,
Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
You were never meant to walk through life alone, trying to figure things out.
Rather, the picture of the yoke is that you are joined with Jesus, experiencing life with Him, learning from Him.
So structure your day to spend time with the One who gives you rest, even as you are walking through difficult circumstances:
- Have quiet time with Him to start your day
- Sing to Him during your workday
- Tell a friend or coworker about His faithfulness at lunch
- Have a laugh with Him in the afternoon as you learn from your mistakes
- Meditate on His promises in the evening
- Thank Him for His unfailing love before you go to sleep
Share your life with the One who loves you most.
4. Remain with Him
Yoke training is designed to make you stronger over time as you walk with Jesus.
Jesus describes Himself as gentle and humble. He is ever patient in showing us the way to go.
Unfortunately, we can choose to walk away from Him.
This can happen if we start believing that we can handle life on our own and don’t need Him.
Check out Jeremiah 6:16, in which the Lord links rest with remaining with Him:
Thus says the Lord: ‘Stand in the ways and see, And ask for the old paths, where the good way is, And walk in it; Then you will find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’”
In choosing the path of disobedience, God’s people walked away from the place of rest!
They were unsettled, always seeking ultimate satisfaction in worldly things but never finding it.
Do not enter the path of the wicked,
And do not walk in the way of evil.
Avoid it, do not travel on it;
Turn away from it and pass on.
For they do not sleep unless they have done evil;
And their sleep is taken away unless they make someone fall (Proverbs 4:14-16).
Don’t become a rest stop for a wicked spirit! Be sure you are walking with others on the path of walking with Jesus.
In summary, rest for your soul comes with believing Him, listening for His guidance and walking with Him in obedience.
What a privilege to walk with the Son of God every day through the power of the Holy Spirit!
Psalm 23 gives us the ultimate picture of rest and restoration:
The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Let us be diligent to enter into the rest that Jesus promises every day!
Be blessed in health, healing and wholeness,
Author of the Take Back Your Temple program
P.S. Do you struggle with eating too much sugar? If so, you are not alone!
Overcoming sugar addiction was a key factor on my journey to losing 85 pounds and dropping from a size 22 to a size 8.
In our 14-day Sugar Detox Challenge (inside the the Take Back Your Temple program), you’ll get the same success strategies and support to gain peace in your eating habits and achieve lasting weight loss success.