Genesis 28:10-12a Jacob left Beer-sheba and went toward Haran. 11 He came to a certain place and stayed there for the night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place. 12 And he dreamed…
Twice Jacob in his travels stopped and rested by a river and twice he had powerful visions of God. The one was a dream that there was a ladder to heaven with angels descending and ascending in this grand portal. God spoke to him in this dream and promised that he would carry his grandfather’s Abraham’s blessing of fathering a great people of God. In another rest by a river, Jacob an angel of God or maybe God, God’s self, wrestled with him and forever changed him in that match. God blessed Jacob in that restless rest by the river and renamed him Israel.
Great things happen when we rest. Our bodies refuel, our mind clears, and we become more open to the word and initiative of God. Doctors tell us that bad things happen when we don’t rest. We have an increase chance of all sorts of medical calamities from heart disease to obesity. We are made to be an active, creative and vibrant people, but for this to happen, we need rest.
So…rest. Rest this summer leave the cell phone at home and drive down to the Hocking Hills, or over to Canton to the Football Hall of Fame. Rest this summer, and enjoy the beach at Alum Creek or the great new river walk, the Scioto Mile, downtown. Rest this summer and simply sit on your deck, patio, or lawn chair and read. Rest from what you have to do, to be available for God for God’s blessing.
As we enter summer at Messiah, some of our ministries rest. Our choirs take a break, Messiah Night Meals stop, Preschool is out and the Pastor’s Class on Wednesday mornings recess. Others only appear in the summer, Vacation Bible School, Wednesday Night Worship, Preschool Day Camp, Women’s Children Banquet, Sunday night golf, High School and Junior High Mission trips, Wednesday Night Pastor’s Class. These different activities allow some of our leaders to rest renew and come back even more committed, while insuring that God’s community at Messiah continues to be filled and blessed.
Rest, then come to worship to encounter God, who longs for you to be blessed and trust that blessing. Sometimes, we can work right through the best gifts that God is longing to give us.
Peace, Pastor Karl