The idea of a peaceful, restful place in God is scattered across the Bible but Paul probably explained the best in Hebrews, how we can enter in and why we risk missing God’s rest, peaceful dwelling. In Chapter 3, he gives the history and explains what had happened to the Israelites in the wilderness, how they had missed out on God’s rest, the peaceful living of God due to their unbelief (Hebrew 3:19) and later he calls it disobedience, a failure to trust (Hebrews 4:11). He then pleads with us to be diligent, tireless, persevere and to carefully strive so that we do not miss out, like the Israelites had done. One major hindrance to entering into God’s Rest is ceasing from our Works: arguably, accepting the “Grace” given by God to live the Christian life and principles only through faith and not our own righteousness. Rather, ceasing from our own efforts and accepting the completed work of the cross.
The tendency when we don’t understand Grace, is to work hard and do our best to earn or achieve things for God. This can result to frustration and discouragement. However, the unmerited favour of God requires none of my contribution, it only requires submission to Gods will and path then things fall into place. Its only with the help of Holy Spirit that we can fully submit and let go of our own will, ambitions, dreams and wilfully give in to Gods dream and purpose for our lives. This is easy but not too easy when we are used to doing things our way. I’m still working on this by being intentional and applying the word of God. Therefore, trusting God is directly linked to being able to entering his restful place. Isaiah reaffirmed this when he declared:
“You will keep in perfect peace, him whose mind is stayed on thee” Isaiah 26:3.
He demonstrates how trusting, fully depending and resting on God results in “perfect peace and rest” despite the presence of problems. God’s dwelling place is the only true place of peace.