God had finished the work . . . so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. (Genesis 2:2)
Today's Scripture & Insight:
1:31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.
2:1 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array. 2 By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.
We sat atop some beach boulders, my friend Soozi and I, watching the foam send up sea spray in arched curls. Looking at the incoming waves crashing one after another against the rocks, Soozi announced, “I love the ocean. It keeps moving so I don’t have to!”
Isn’t it interesting how some of us feel we need “permission” to pause from our work to rest? Well, that’s just what our good God offers us! For six days, God spun the earth into existence, creating light, land, vegetation, animals, and humans. Then on the seventh day, He rested (Genesis 1:31–2:2). In the Ten Commandments, God listed His rules for healthy living to honor Him (Exodus 20:3–17), including the command to remember the Sabbath as a day of rest (vv. 8–11). In the New Testament, we see Jesus healing all the sick of the town (Mark 1:29–34) and then early the next morning retreating to a solitary place to pray (v. 35). Purposefully, our God both worked and rested.
The rhythm of God’s provision in work and His invitation to rest reverberates around us. Spring’s planting yields growth in summer, harvest in autumn, and rest in winter. Morning, noon, afternoon, evening, night. God orders our lives for both work and rest, offering us permission to do both.
Be Still for the Presence of the Lord
Scripture to Respond:
This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
How would you assess the balance in your life between work and rest? When and how might you pause each day to reflect on God’s example of rhythm and rest?
Dear God, thank You that You made me to follow after Your heart, to both work and rest for Your glory and my good.
Wong Wai Tung (Chief Executive Officer of The Great Wall Education Foundation)