Next week is “the movie.”
That’s what my fourth grader calls it. She’s been fretting about this movie for two years.
She always lowers her voice when she speaks of it. She always calls it “THE MOVIE” in hushed capital letters. Occasionally, her hands even pop up to make quotation marks in the air.
Seems like they’ve been showing a movie like this to fourth graders for decades. I watched it when I was in school, but I sure don’t remember dreading it or worrying over it or spending months terrified of the potential embarrassment.
But that’s my girl. She’s a thinker. A planner. More like a fretter. Maybe an obsesser.
She gets most of that from me.
Okay, maybe she gets all of that from me.
I keep telling her the truth: There’s nothing in this movie about puberty and growing up that we haven’t covered here at home already. So, what’s the big deal?
But truth isn’t really cutting through the emotional trauma she’s built up over the years.
It’s rumbling around in her heart and mind, turning up in the most unexpected places. Last night, I mentioned how quickly April has flown by and she launched into another speech about the imminence of “The Movie” and how her life will end within the week.
Next week, I guarantee she’ll come home and I’ll say, “How was ‘the movie?’ and she’ll shrug it off for the absolutely mundane, not-terrible, unsurprising, non-monumental moment in her life that it really is.
But for this week: It’s a distractor. It’s a stressor. It’s an emotional time-bomb.
So, I’m playing the voice of reason for my daughter. I’m the quiet, calm purveyor of wisdom and I’m the one trying to give her a healthy perspective on this thing called life.
Because apparently when you’re ten, everything is a near-catastrophe.
But I need this for my own life, too.
Because I’m distracted. I’m stressed. I’m fretting over potentialities and playing through possibilities, just turning them over and over like a dryer tumbling my wet towels.
This is what I don’t want. Tumble, tumble, tumble.
But what if it happens? Tumble, tumble, tumble.
I want this….and I want that….and it’s impossible to have both. Tumble, tumble, tumble.
I read God’s Word and it just breezes through my mind without touchdown or impact.
But this finally hits home:
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 (Isaiah 30:15 NIV)
Rest is what I need.
I say I need a vacation, or a break, or a getaway, or a long walk in absolute quiet.
But what I really need is a rested soul, a quiet spirit.
Oh, a physical rest would be nice, of course. But so often that’s a temporary fix and then it’s back to this pacing back and forth, this distraction, this tension.
I need a resting place in the here and now of this life, this moment, this situation, this day and everything that this day brings.
“This is the resting place, let the weary rest” (Isaiah 28:12).
And the resting place isn’t far. It’s not an exotic island and it doesn’t take a plane-trip to Hawaii or my entire savings account to get there.
It’s trusting Jesus.
In When Women Long for Rest, Cindy McMenamin wrote:
“Rest isn’t just laying down and clearing your mind. It’s retraining your mind to turn over the problems to the only One who is able to work them out.”
My heart finds rest when it sinks into the rhythms of grace God has established.
I’m no longer pushing, pushing, pushing for my own agenda or striving to set my own pace, or straining to head in my own direction.
I’ve relaxed into Him.
Elisabeth Elliott wrote:
“Jesus, in the unbroken intimacy of His Father’s love, kept a quiet heart. None of us possesses a heart so perfectly at rest, for none lives in such divine unity, but we can learn a little more each day of what Jesus knew…”
May I learn a little of this today: A quiet heart, a heart perfectly at rest because I’m aware of the intimacy of His love, trusting in His care, united in His will.
So “let the weary rest.”
Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer and worship leader. Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness. Her book, Ask Me Anything, Lord: Opening Our Hearts to God’s Questions, is available now! To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.
Copyright © 2015 Heather King