Today I'm pleased to share this blog space with my good friend, teammate, and Dallas Theological Seminary student Genta Hayes. Genta is a native of Kansas City, Missouri. She is a daughter, sister, God-mother, a follower of Christ and a lover of People. Genta's passion is to shepherd the hearts of women so that they may know and be fully known by Jesus Christ.
The month of August brought the start of many new ventures in my life: the launching of a new onboarding program for the YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas, starting a new role as a fellow in the Spiritual Formation department at Dallas Theological Seminary, beginningmy internship with the seminary, and the start of a new relationship with a new roommate. While all of these represent a new season and are all good and from the Lord, they have all required work. Despite the goodness of all things new, by the end of August my soul and body had grown weary, exhausted and restless.
In my exhaustion I took a trip with friends to a lake house for the Labor Day weekend in hopes of stilling away from the busyness of life for intimacy with the one I knew could restore and rejuvenate me, Jesus Christ.
The first morning I rose early, grabbed my Bible, pen and journal eager to dive into Scripture and work- put to use my bible study methods with pen and pad. Before writing I cried out in desperation, “I am tired and weary, please revive me Lord,” then opened my Bible. Within one minute of reading I looked out and noticed the peacefulness of the lake just yards away the from me, so I closed the Bible and headed down to the dock to experience that serenity the water would hopefully render.
After fighting through a pile of red ants, a swarm of large mosquitos, and numerous spider webs, I finally made it to the edge of the dock to the still quiet body of water. And in the stillness of resting on my knees in a humble posture of prayer I glanced up to see a large spider perched in the center of its web and an abundance of flies and mosquitos caught up in the web. A still small voice captivated my heart with these words, “The spider builds its web right where it is, then climbs into the center to rest and waits for God to bless it.”
Tears flowed down my face and the heaviness and anxiety in my heart and body dissipated.
The rest of the weekend was spent resting in the center of all of the work that had gone forth before my trip. With friends I laughed, cried, ate, slept and prayed. Each day I would still away from the group to a secret place alone with God for refreshment by all the nature around me: spiders, the lake, jumping fish, playful squirrels, hummingbirds, turtles, ducks, and lizards.
We can all learn a lesson or two from the spider namely through its response to Scripture:
Genesis 2:2-3: "By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on . it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done. (NIV)
●The spider honors God the Creator by working then resting and enjoying the fruit of its labor.
Mark 6:31: "Then Jesus said, 'Let's go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.' He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn't even have time to eat." (NLT)
●The spider yields to Christs’ command by resting in the center of its web (a secret place where it can be rejuvenated and restored with the provisions of the Lord)
If the spider who has no emotions or emotional barometer can adhere to the call to rest and enjoy God’s presence and rejuvenation, then surely us humans- His most prized creation can draw close and enter into His rest. Like the spider, lets Pray, work, and then honor our Creator by resting in Him.
A Call to Rest:
1. What is the web our Heavenly Papa has designed you to build this season?
Mine is the web of prayer and relationships (Just where he has me)
2. Where is your secret place of rest to still away and be rejuvenated and restored in Christ, and how often do you take the time to get there?
Mine is the lake, a prayer walk 2-3 times per week, or the lazy chair early in the morning with a cup of tea and Bible