_ Study _
“Return to your rest, my soul,
for the Lord has been good to you.”
_ Read _
Sometimes I wake up already longing for the time in my day (for me that’s nap time or after 7p) when I can sit down, pull out my phone, and put on Netflix. I love a good zone out session. And honestly, I usually don’t feel bad about that. I often feel that I deserve it and am convinced it’ll give me exactly what I need—rest.
But more often than not, Netflix, social media, and zoning out don’t give me the deep rest I crave when life feels heavy.
So when our go-to rest activities aren’t cutting it, what are we to do?
What if Jesus is beckoning us to return to a deeper, truer rest than Netflix and zoning out offers?
What if instead of going into autopilot when it comes to rest, we took a moment and asked Jesus to direct us?
Would He lead you to spend more time with your spouse or roommate or friends? Would He prompt you to return to the ways you’ve enjoyed rest in the past? Would that mean creating space to read, go to bed early, or simply spend time in His presence?
What would Jesus have you do with your rest time during this Advent season?
Often, we are intimidated by questions like these because we think we’ll answer them wrong or we doubt what our gut (which is often the Holy Spirit) is telling us. Friend, stop making it harder than it needs to be! God is good and wants to show you the way to rest.
_ Practice _
Take a moment to sit with Jesus and answer these questions honestly. Imagine that Jesus is sitting next to you and talking to you like a longtime friend would.
What season of life are you in? Do you have a lot of space for rest or is rest minimal?
What has been restful for you in different phases of life? Think back to childhood—often times our young selves had a natural understanding of what we needed.
Think about the last time your whole being felt engaged and fulfilled. What activity were you doing? Who (if anyone) were you with?
Now, incorporate one of these activities or practices into your day today.
Remember, there’s grace as you return to rest! It can take practice to listen to God and intentionally choose what will provide you with the rest He offers and you crave. But He is good and patient, and you will figure it out together!
This devotional is part of the A Restful Advent series.
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