Thursday, March 03, 2005

Down, But Not Out

Well, here I am at home on a work day with a knee injury. It sucks to be off work and yet not able to do things I enjoy, but I guess that is the nature of a sick day. I will be hobbling around the house to help the wife so as to not feel totally useless. I find days like this challenge me on a different level as well, that level where, as a man, I feel the deep desire to be useful and needed. Sometimes the enemy of my soul can come in on a day like this and really wreak some havoc, but lately God has been teaching my wife and I so much about rest. For example, when it comes to finances, which comes into play with time off of work. When we were working in China we were making very good money and a friend at work here asked me if it was hard financially to come back. Now understand that I am not at the top of the payscale out here, I work construction and live in subsidised housing (bit of a change from China). I told him that honestly it was not difficult because, you see, we know this Guy who has a whack of cows on a whole bunch of hills. This has become our standard reply to financial woes now. It is a reply of peace.
This rest is reaching into so many places and bringing peace. Even in the realm of our church life. There is so much ado about a-doing that it can become difficult to really know what I am to be a-doin'. I read one dad's testimonial about this dilemma and I so agree. Paul even told us:

32 I should like you to be free of anxieties. An unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord.
33 But a married man is anxious about the things of the world, how he may please his wife,
34 and he is divided.

So this speaks to me of the freedom that I have as a husband and a father to be free from the anxieties Paul saw in the men of the church. This has been the rest that God is showing us. We pray for and reach out to our neighbours, we attend church with an intention to bless others, we give, and yet we rest in this peace. This peace that tells me it is Christ who holds me, not a ministry. It is Christ who fills me, not my job. It is Christ who sends me, not man. It is Christ. This is a discpline which will reach into our lives when our kids are out of the house years from now as well. You see, it can be easy to get into doing and we use the old adage of the ship needs to be moving for the rudder to work and direct, but pardon me for being so brash as to say what a pile of s@#* that is. Be still and know that He is God. In quietness and assurance is our strength.
Perhaps the picture of the boat needs to be taken back to the times when there were no motors and they had to rely on the wind. Rest is knowing that it is okay for the wind to not be blowing and also knowing that when the wind is blowing the rudder will work. Works is all about gettin' that paddle in the water when the wind stops and rowing for all we are worth. I guess rest is just knowing. And it is so good to just know. All the good works God preordained for us lie in this place.
More on this later....I have some wife pleasing to go do.

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