Rest can be lost AND returned!

We are not in control, and have never been.  We are not promised a trouble-free life.  The opposite is true.  Bodies break down.  Accidents happen.   Believers get sick and die like the rest of the world.   Budgets are destroyed overnight. Comforts that we take for granted are taken from us overnight.  Tragedies compound like they did yesterday in the province of Nova Scotia.  Hearts ache for the loss all around us.   We even end up secretly disappointed in our own weakness to ride out this present COVID-19 “storm” with an “unshakable” faith.
I know, I sound rather bleak, maybe even a little dark.
But then a verse from the Bible comes flying off the page.   You can breathe again because you know it’s true.  It’s what your faith has been waiting to hear.  A word from God’s Word.  It’s like a whisper from heaven. 

Psalm 116:7   “Return to your rest, O my soul, for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.”     

It dawns on you that “rest” is often found in a crisis not without it.

That seems to be what Jeremiah, the ancient prophet told Israel.

Jeremiah 6:16 (ESV) Thus says the LORD: “Stand by the roads, and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’

Returning to God and His way is the Bible’s prescription for rest. 

And rest is what Jesus offered to a weary world when he walked the dusty roads of ancient Israel.  Recall His words written down by St. Matthew:

Matthew 11:28-30 (ESV)   “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  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.”

The gentle and humble Jesus is the source of rest for our souls.  Return to Him, answer His call, listen to His Word and you will find yourself telling others that “the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.” 

He invites you to come to Him and He will generously give you the rest that your soul needs.

Rest in Him,
Pastor Deric


I still remember the first time I read the words that Moses gave to Aaron the High Priest with the instruction that they were to be spoken over the people of Israel as a means of assuring them of God’s presence and approval in their lives.  I was amazed at God’s posture toward His people given the fact that they were often wayward and rebellious.  Still, God wanted “the apple of His eye” to know that He was ready, willing and able to fill them with SHALOM by the promise He made to them. 

His blessing to His people is recorded in Numbers chapter 6. 

Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, ‘Thus you shall bless the sons of Israel. You shall say to them: The LORD bless you, and keep you; The LORD make His face shine on you, And be gracious to you; The LORD lift up His countenance on you, And give you peace.’ “So they shall invoke My name on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them.” (NASB)

Hear what He is saying to you.

1. The LORD’s attitude toward you is one of blessing.  That word “bless” simply means to speak words of encouragement, hope and peace.  We are kept safe in knowing that He extends His favour over our lives. 
2. The LORD’s posture toward you is one of favour and kindness. Notice that there are two descriptions for God’s “face” in the text.  One explains that “His face shines on you” and the other is that “He lifts up His countenance on you.”  Both are meant to show you that He Himself is watching over you with a smile, in fact, a beaming smile. 
3.The LORD’s attitude and posture is the basis for giving us SHALOM, i.e. peace.
I treasure the story about Jesus recorded in the Gospel according to Luke, chapter.  Remember that Jesus went to the synagogue in Nazareth, His hometown, on the Sabbath. At the appropriate time He stood to read from the scroll of Isaiah, chapter 61 which says,
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” 
Luke writes “that he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”    He is the fulfillment of the “acceptable year of the Lord.”  With Him and through Him came the “favour of the Lord.”  In Jesus, we receive the blessing of the ancient Aaronic blessing given through Moses.  God’s beaming smile is upon every one of His children and His favour gives us SHALOM.
For this time of upheaval in the world, for every personal crisis we face and for all the unknowns that lie ahead, we, the children of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, have SHALOM.


SHALOM church family, 

Pastor Deric