Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Thinking Biblically About Worry, V of V

Rest and war

I am deeply persuaded that real, lasting personal rest of heart is never to be found in ease of circumstances. Even in the best of situations in this fallen world your heart will be able to find reasons for worry. Inner rest of soul and lasting peace of heart are only ever found when Jesus and His kingdom are your highest and deepest treasures. When you place your identity in His never-changing hands, when you find your meaning and purpose in the unstoppable work of His kingdom, and when you place your inner sense of well-being on the sure foundation of His promise to meet your every need, you will be able to rest even when the situations and relationships around you are broken.

Defeating worry is not about hoping that tomorrow will be better. No, defeating worry is about being a good soldier in this deeper war for the heart. It is about fighting the temptations to attach the peace of your heart to things that, by their very nature are temporary and, therefore, are not organically designed to give you lasting peace (see Matthew 6:19). It is about daily feeding your soul on  the promises and provisions of your heavenly Father. It is about taking special care before you name something a need. And it is about living for something bigger than you. It is about giving the love and concern of your heart to the King and His kingdom and fighting the instinct to construct a Lilliputian kingdom of your own. The kingdom of self will never give you rest because it does not have the capacity to satisfy the cravings of your heart.

In the cave, David had it right when he said, "For you alone, O Lord make me dwell in safety" (Psalm 4:8). It's as if David is saying, "My peace isn't found in locations, relationships, or circumstances; it is found in the Lord. Because it is, I am as free of worry here in this cave as I was in the palace!" Yes, David was grieved as any father would be, and no, he did not know how things were going to turn out; but in the middle of his questions and in the throes of his grief he was a man with a heart at rest, so much so that he was able to sleep.

Worry and rest always reveal the true treasures of our hearts, and in this battle we are not alone because the King we are called to serve is also Emmanuel. He is ever with us and battles for us by His grace.
~Article by Paul David Tripp

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