How to Rest in the Lord Without Feeling Lazy

As you may know, I love to help you overcome life’s obstacles, trust God more deeply, and live the abundant life. And a lot of what I talk about comes not only from my education but also from my personal experience. I’ve been through the wilderness and it’s amazing to be out, but I frequently go back into the wilderness so that I can help you come through too.

But today’s topic is a little different. I’m still in the wilderness on this one. And I am hoping we can walk it together.

I want to talk about resting in the Lord—specifically, how to do it without feeling lazy.

There are two ways in which we rest in the Lord: physically, and emotionally.

When you think of rest, you likely think of sleeping, vacations, and lazy Sundays. But it’s so much more than that.

Do you remember what you did when you were a kid and you had a problem? Did you go back to your room to figure it all out, stress over every possible scenario and work every angle? Of course not. You likely took that problem to your parents or guardian and went back outside to play, not giving it another thought.

That’s what God wants us to do, too. Even Jesus in Matthew 18:3 said, Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

Yikes. That makes it pretty clear that trying to have everything figured out all the time is misguided.

For the majority of my life, I have believed that rest is for sissies. Boy was I wrong. I was confusing rest with laziness.

I’ve since learned that resting is what you do when you need to recover or prepare. Laziness, on the other hand, is when you are unwilling and unmotivated to any kind of work.

I was not lazy. Not by a long shot. But that didn’t stop me from believing the lies.

I believed that if I put the project down and spent time with my family, I was being lazy.

I believed that if I didn’t ponder all possible solutions to my problems than I was being lazy.

I honestly believed that if I didn’t keep going, someone would surpass me and all my work would be for nothing.

What a lie!

Are you believing lies too?

Resting in the Lord is more than just getting a little extra shut eye; it is cultivating a confident assurance that everything will work out according to His sovereign will.

I know you desire to follow Him, but maybe your life is being turned upside down right now and you keep thinking, There has to be something that He wants me to do. He can’t possibly expect me to just rest… can he?

Yes, God really does want to take care of every aspect of your life.

So what’s going to happen if you don’t rest in the Lord? There are three consequences of ignoring God’s rest:

Consequence #1

Nothing will change anyway (at least not for the better).Do you like wasting time and energy? I don’t. I’ve learned that no doors will open until He’s ready. So no amount of your fruitless attempts will change that.

Consequence #2

Your faith can’t grow. If you think YOU can make it happen, your dependency will not be on God, it will be in your self. Resting in Him takes faith. So why not enjoy a double blessing of growing in your faith while you rest in Him. Doubly sweet.

Consequence #3

You will continue to carry a burden you were never meant to carry. I don’t know about you but when I know I’m supposed to be resting and I don’t, I feel this terrible guilt. Guilt doesn’t come from God. If you’re feeling guilty, it’s not going to go away any time soon because the enemy of your soul is trying to make matters worse by having you think on one hand that you are sinning against God but on the other hand that you have control over your situation.

All it takes to move forward is to put your trust in Him.

Of course, God doesn’t want you to just sit on you tush all day! He wants and needs you to do your part, but that’s it. YOUR part. Not His.

God can be trusted. He knows the end from the beginning, and he wants what’s best for you.

Will you choose today to lay your burdens down and say, “God I rest in you”?

13 replies
  1. Nnaemeka Onuoha
    Nnaemeka Onuoha says:

    Having taken a very deep reflection of this wonderful article you wrote,I have come to a conclusion even without doubt that it is definitely and uncontestably true..I have been carrying some worries/burden in my heart/mind especially courtesy of the fact that I’m aging as the day goes by,but what I noticed that it didn’t and hasn’t change anything nor the situation. As you advised,I’m gonna try to cast all my burden/worries on our Lord God Almighty. He alone has the power and authority to change my story. Please I entreat you to remember me in your prayers to help me forget my problems.
    God Almighty bless you as you continue in the good works of our Lord God.

  2. Mamie
    Mamie says:

    It’s funny how we can view rest as being lazy. I have struggled with that view most of my life, striving being exhausted. Learning how to read in Him changes everything.

  3. Janene Eldred
    Janene Eldred says:

    Boy, did you hit the nail on the head!! I think the issue with resting in God, is that we are “bucking” our culture here in the U.S. We have it so ingrained in us that we can’t waste time, must be doing something useful all the time, etc., that NOT to do so feels sinful. But you are absolutely right, if something is not in God’s timing, it doesn’t matter how much we problem solve, it isn’t going to happen. And we do need to rest in Him, because even HE rested! Thank you for this reminder!!!

  4. Kris Reece
    Kris Reece says:

    Thanks for sharing Janene. You’re so right. We always feel like we have to “do” something. What a lie! Happy resting!

  5. Stacey Lynn
    Stacey Lynn says:

    Oh wow… I sure needed this! I am forever stuck in that state of “If I’m not doing something, I’m doing WRONG!” Even when my body tells me to shut some stuff down! Thank you <3

  6. Kris Reece
    Kris Reece says:

    I hear ya Stacey! I have to constantly remind myself to shut things down. Thanks for sharing!

  7. Kimberly Walker
    Kimberly Walker says:

    After the day I had at work today…I needed to hear these words.
    I didn’t like what I saw in myself…impatience MAGNIFIED.
    As I was driving home this evening, I rehashed the day in my mind…I HATE WASTING TIME…it frustrates me like nothing else…but I did not have the liberty to go forward…in my line of work…someone else decides those decisions for me..oh, .I tried every trick in the book….and still no avail…but I knew in my heart that my attitude was not correct.
    Maybe, this is all part of it….
    I’m working thru your book on FINDING YOUR PURPOSE…maybe so.

  8. Kris Reece
    Kris Reece says:

    I hear you Kimberly. I too hate wasting time. it’s one of my biggest peeves. It’s during those times now that I hand it all over to the Lord. I pray you keep your joy!

    P.S. Thanks for reading my book. I hope it helps you walk in your God given purpose

  9. Toni Mcneill
    Toni Mcneill says:

    This is an absolutely perfect article for the time we are in. During this pandemic I have been made to slow down. It is very challenging on some days just being still. For so long our culture has forced us to always feel as though we have to be “busy”. However what I have learned during this time is God wants time with us. It’s pretty much like the story of Mary and Martha in the Bible. The time that I have had to spend with him has been truly life changing!

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