Thursday, July 23, 2015

Rest and Peace

UV 1479/10,000 Rest and Peace
But now the LORD my God hath given me rest on every side, so that there is neither adversary nor evil occurrent
I Kings 5 v 4
Since the Lord our God is the One who is, was and is to come, He rules over the past, the present and the future extending into eternity. This is the reason He is able to turn a historical event or saying into a promise that is valid in our times and lives. The uni-verse is an extract from a letter from one King to another- the young Solomon to King Hiram, king of Tyre, now in modern Lebanon. Yet it is a promise to our generation that the Lord will enable us to enter into His rest. He will give us rest all round. Neither adversary nor evil shall overtake us. This was the anointing upon Solomon, the son of David that we can claim for ourselves as our inheritance. The name Solomon is derived from “peace” or Shalom. Jesus was at peace even when the disciples were terrified by the storm that rocked the boat in which the Master alone was sleeping. We need to be peaceful like Jesus and do the works that peace enables. The Lord gives us peace and rest here and now. We may go through rough weather, high waves and tough winds but we need to hold on to that inner peace.

The Hebrew word “Shalom” implies peace as not just an absence of conflict but the presence of God that engenders blessedness in every sense. It is a combination of joy, peace, prosperity, health, wisdom, grace. The Lord gave Solomon favour or grace in the eyes of all of Israel’s neighbours. He sought and got their help in procuring material to build the temple of the Lord. Similarly, the Lord will enable help for us from unlikely quarters. He will give us grace or favour all round. To rest also means to quell our fears and to wean ourselves from desires that are too ambitious and to lie in the Lord’s arms and presence like a weaned child lies satisfied in her mother’s arms. It comes from a confidence that the Lord who had provided and protected us this far will never leave us nor forsake us. He would lift us up in due time.

It does not mean that we are complacent or lethargic. But that we seek to improve in 360 degrees or all round excellence. We are called to be not just faithful but to be diligent. Not just due diligence but we need to go the extra mile. Rest does not mean being indifferent, inert or to rest on our past achievements but to know that the Lord has given us peace to strive to fulfil His will in our lives, undisturbed and focussed on the purpose He has lain on our hearts. We should not wait till we die to rest in peace but to always enter the Lord’s rest.

Prateep V Philip

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