Monthly Archives: January 2022

Toil and Rest

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-by7yf-118be64

When mankind fell, enmity and disharmony entered creation. We are restless and at war – with each other, with our spouses, with creation, with the ground, and with God Himself.
But Christ has promised rest – He will take that enmity upon himself and bring us rest.

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Dark Places

The problem with dark places is that you can’t see.

You don’t know what is happening, you don’t know where it will end.

You don’t know if it will end. You don’t know what is on the other side.

Dark places are terrifying because monsters are real and monsters are terrifying.

Dark places strip us of our confidence. Dark places expose us as blind and weak. We are afraid to step forward. We can’t go back. We can’t bear the moment.

The pain is too much and we are tired. So, so tired.

The dark places creep into your soul and leave you wounded and limping.

So, so much loss. So, so much pain. So, so much.

There was a time when you had your best friend and you had a drink with him and didn’t know it was the last time.

There was a time when you told a joke and your child laughed and rolled her eyes and you didn’t know it would be the last time.

There was a time when you walked through a store without pain and didn’t know that would be the last time.

Your joints hurt; your bones hurt. You heart hurts. And you are so, so tired.

We learned in church that dark places don’t happen if you do everything right. But they were wrong.

We learned in church that if you loved God enough and raised your kids right and followed the marriage rules and had enough sex with your spouse, everything would be “happy, happy, happy all the day.”

But then kids run. Health collapses. Friends hate you. and you find yourself in yet again another dark place.

And you are so, so tired. You don’t know if she’ll call again.

You don’t know if you will hear back from the doctor or if they can even do anything.

You can’t go back; and you can’t go forward. All you can do is huddle in the dark and cry out, “Lord, how long!?”

Abba, Father.

But what if I told you that in that dark place is where you find your savior? What if I told you that God is the God of dark places. He knows what is there.

He also knows that it won’t ever take you from his love.

He also knows how long the dark will last.

And he knows what is on the other side.

It WILL eventually break forth, heaven will open, the light will shine down. The rainbow will glitter and the meadow will glisten and the lion will be there lying down with the lamb just waiting for you to run your fingers through its mane.

But you won’t do it, because you have another thing on your mind, in these green pastures.

The bridegroom is there. And the only way to see the bridegroom is through the dark places. He is also walking with you, even if you don’t see him or feel him.

Because he longs for you like you long for him.

I don’t know why the dark places are necessary. I don’t know where there are so many of them. I don’t know why the wicked seem to prosper and those who long for the revelation of the sons of God are so plagued with so much pain.

The answers about gold being refined and laundry being clean don’t really help much in a long night of fear and pain and weeping…but it is true anyway.

In your tears, God is there. He is keeping them.

In your blindness, he sees. He knows what is in the dark.

And he knows what is on the other side.

Patience, dear ones. Your Saviour is coming.

Please wait. Please rest.

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