Learning To Live In A Cyclone of Rest
I want to be a breath of fresh air, a crisp drink of water, a nap on a rainy day.
I want to be a place of peace—a restful retreat where you can take down your striving and expose the tender parts hidden underneath. I want to be a place that leaves you feeling cool and refreshed and like all of the beautiful things you hope for are possible.
But last week, I was none of those things.
Last week was a mess. I was a cyclone of stress—sucking anyone in earshot into my complaining and frantic planning.
Emails stacked up, projects loomed closer, and plans fell through. With one hand I was shooting a video and with the other, choosing an apartment and signing a lease. And somehow I was frantically trying to scrape it all together, finally collapsing in tearful defeat.
My anxiety was contagious.
And as I tearfully apologized to the people around me, I vowed that once things settle down I’d be able to calm down a bit.
But that’s the lie… isn’t it?
“Once things settle down…”
I realized as I said it that I’ve been saying those same words my whole life.
We always have just one more thing that has to get done before we’re willing to rest—before peace is possible, before we can really breathe and enjoy the life we’re so busy building.
But it never works that way.
Because there’s always one more thing, one more thing, always one more project to get out of the way before “things will settle down.”
And that leaves us living a lie—procrastinating a full life into some undefined future without any plans for actually getting there.
And I recognized as I said it that this is just not the way I want to live.
But I didn’t have a plan.
And so on Sunday night I went to bed, making a casual note to remind myself to pray for peace.
And as I woke up the next morning and read my devotional (for the first time in weeks,) the first word that stood out was rest.
I prayed for peace that morning, just like I’d promised, and when I got to work, rest was waiting for me there too.
One of my friends walked up to me and told me that God wants me to rest, that I need peace in this season and that he’s got it all under control. And that was just the beginning.
The message has been perpetuating for days—God infuriatingly calling one of the busiest seasons of my life a season of rest.
And this idea is transforming me. It’s slow going right now, but I know that he’s doing something big.
I know that life will never slow down, but he’s teaching me rest in the meantime. He’s teaching me a kind of rest that transcends finished projects, or fewer deadlines.
He’s teaching me the kind of rest that comes along with things like peace and trust and faith—all lessons that so often elude me.
And so as I’m stepping into this season of rest, I want to share something with you that’s inspired me immensely.
It’s a podcast by my friend Caroline—one of the most gifted teachers I know.
They’re some of the wisest, and most needed, words I’ve ever heard and I am honored to get to share them with you. I hope they bring you to the rest that they’re inspiring in me.
And whatever is going on in your life today—whatever brand of crazy is filling your days—I pray that you too can find a season of rest.